That’s a lot of money for a lamp post
DESPITE the many criticisms of Ashford’s shared space area, most people have acknowledged that at least the area around Elwick Road looks much better. Now we know that those improvements have come at a price. This week we reveal that those impressivelooking curved lamp posts cost a cool £7,000 each. Cllr Keith Ferrin, the county council’s cabinet member for highways, said he was appalled to discover the cost, which is roughly seven times more than a normal lamp post. His outrage comes a little late. Cllr Ferrin insists he would have stepped in to bring costs down if he had been in charge at the time. A striking design could surely have been achieved at a fraction of the cost. Extravagances such as this, funded with taxpayers’ money, look wasteful and obscene to those hard-working people who have paid for them. Meanwhile, the debate over the safety of the shared space continues. As we reported last week, KCC says no injury accidents have been reported since it opened several months ago. Our report sparked a couple of comments from people who claim to have witnessed apparently serious incidents. The truth is that it is too early to hail the shared space a success or otherwise. One thing is for sure - everyone hopes that those predicting death and injury are proved wrong.