Tragic dad at Down­ing Street

Cam­paign­ers call for end to shared spa­ces

Airdrie & Coatbridge Advertiser - - Front Page - An­drew Bargh

The fa­ther of tragic Mood­ies­burn tod­dler Clin­ton Pringle vis­ited Down­ing Street yes­ter­day.

Former Ad­ver­tiser re­porter Michael Pringle was in­vited to join safety cam­paign­ers as they handed in a pe­ti­tion to the Prime Min­is­ter call­ing for an end to shared-space road schemes. Three-yearold Clin­ton was killed last sum­mer while on hol­i­day in Jer­sey after be­ing struck by a van while walk­ing on a shared-space road.

The fa­ther of a three-yearold Mood­ies­burn boy killed by a van driver in Jer­sey has gone to Down­ing Street to hand over a pe­ti­tion to Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May.

Clin­ton Pringle was vis­it­ing fam­ily while on hol­i­day with his mum Stacey, when he was struck on a shared-space road when en­ter­ing a park in June last year.

He died in hos­pi­tal three days after be­ing run over by the Volk­swa­gen ve­hi­cle.

De­spite ad­mit­ting us­ing her phone to text less than a minute be­fore hit­ting Clin­ton, driver Re­bekah Le Gal was cleared of caus­ing his death by dan­ger­ous driv­ing.

She did ad­mit a lesser charge of caus­ing death by care­less driv­ing and was handed an eight-month sus­pended sen­tence and a driv­ing ban in July.

Clin­ton’s dad Michael trav­elled to Num­ber 10 yes­ter­day for the open­ing day of par­lia­ment as part of a del­e­ga­tion to hand over a pe­ti­tion let­ter call­ing for an end to shared-space road schemes sim­i­lar to the one where his son was killed.

Michael told the Ad­ver­tiser: “These shared-space ar­eas can be con­fus­ing for pedes­tri­ans and driv­ers alike.

“When you blur the lines of dis­tinc­tion be­tween pave­ment and road then you in­crease the prob­a­bil­ity of ac­ci­dents and fa­tal­i­ties.

“Driv­ers need to be more vig­i­lant when ap­proach­ing these types of ar­eas but as our fam­ily has found out, that isn’t al­ways the case.

“Clin­ton paid with his life and the peo­ple who plan and im­ple­ment these types of spa­ces have his blood on their hands.

“These shared-space ar­eas may look nice on the eye but there is no sub­sti­tute for proper pave­ments and con­trolled cross­ings.

“Be­lieve me, there is noth­ing nice about look­ing at your child fight for his life in a hos­pi­tal in­ten­sive care unit.”

He con­tin­ued: “De­spite ac­quit­ting Le Gal of the more se­ri­ous charge, the judge who presided over the trial agreed that she should have been ex­tra vig­i­lant given that she was driv­ing to­wards and through a shared-space area where vul­ner­a­ble road users were present.

“He also pointed out that the area and the road lay­out were con­fus­ing to pedes­tri­ans who could think they were al­ready in­side the park.”

Michael joined cam­paigner Sandy Tay­lor, chair of East Dun­bar­ton­shire Visu­ally Im­paired Peo­ple’s Fo­rum, who con­stantly pushed for a con­tro­ver­sial shared-space scheme in Kirk­in­til­loch near Glas­gow to be scrapped and has been pe­ti­tion­ing the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment for two years to stop such schemes be­ing built.

Cam­paign­ers have con­sis­tently ar­gued that shared-space schemes have lit­tle or no dis­tinc­tion be­tween pave­ment and road ar­eas and dis­crim­i­nate against vul­ner­a­ble road users, in­clud­ing the dis­abled and chil­dren.

Sandy added: “This re­port is so strong and it can­not be ig­nored.

“Blind peo­ple can­not use these ar­eas safely and we want the Prime Min­is­ter to take im­me­di­ate ac­tion to act fully on the find­ings of this re­port be­fore any more towns are sub­jected to this failed plan­ning pol­icy.”

These shared-space ar­eas can be con­fus­ing for pedes­tri­ans and driv­ers alike

Spe­cial de­liv­ery Michael Pringle joined cam­paign­ers to hand in a pe­ti­tion to No 10

Grief Mourn­ers’ trib­utes to Clin­ton at the scene

Vital visit Michael, third from the left, out­side Down­ing Street with fel­low cam­paign­ers. Right, young Clin­ton’s life was pre­ma­turely ended

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