Petition Against 36ft Bridge Replacing Otford Rail Crossing

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We, the undersigned wish to register our objection to the building of a 62 step footbridge at the rail crossing close to Otford Station.

This foot crossing has served the community since 1862. There has not been a single fatality or serious accident on it in over 158 years.

National statistics for trips and falls from steps suggest the bridge represents a far greater risk of accidents happening than the foot crossing which it seeks to replace.

Those who will be particularly vulnerable are parents with young children and older residents. A third of Otford’s population is over 65 and, as such a bridge represents not just an inconvenience, but a hazard to safety and potentially a barrier to people who wish to walk between their homes and the village centre, shops and post office.  Those with young children in push chairs and the disabled will also suffer from this obstacle that will dominate the surrounding area.  In poor weather conditions we believe that many accidents and injuries per year could occur.

The Otford Society and many other local residents and organisations stood against the last bridge proposal in March 2017. At that hearing adjudicators from Kent County Council supported Otford’s concerns about safety and inconvenience, and rejected Network Rail’s appeal with a unanimous 5-0 verdict.

We would like to make it very clear to the Planning Inspectorate that we do not wish for the current crossing to be replaced by a bridge.

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