Council vows to prosecute vandals after LTN signs chopped down

By Robert Firth, Local Democracy Reporter

A council has vowed to prosecute vandals after a road sign informing motorists of restrictions on travelling down a street in a controversial Low Traffic Neighbourhood (LTN) was chopped down.

The “no motor vehicles” sign in Streatham was sliced off its post in Valley Road and dumped in a nearby planter on the street earlier this week.

Lambeth council said the sign would be “fixed as soon as possible,” adding that “where damage is committed we will gather all available information and seek to prosecute”.

The stump remains after the “no motor vehicles” sign was chopped down in Valley Road, Streatham (Picture: Robert Firth)

Since October most drivers have been banned from travelling down Valley Road as part of the Labour-run council’s £450,000 Streatham Wells LTN, which aims to improve road safety and reduce pollution in the area. But the restrictions have fiercely divided residents.

Some people have praised the LTN for making the streets in the area quieter and safer to cycle down. Others believe the traffic scheme has pushed vehicles into already busy main roads, doubling journey times and worsening pollution in certain areas.

The restrictions, which cover Leigham Avenue, Culverhouse Gardens, Conifer Gardens, Valley Road and Gleneldon Road, will initially be in place for 12 to 18 months.

The council said it would monitor traffic and air pollution levels in the area and collect feedback from residents during this period.

On Tuesday, Malcolm Clark, Labour councillor for Streatham Wells, said he was “disappointed” how the council had managed the first two weeks of the LTN in a statement posted on X.

He wrote: “The council does not seem to have done as well as many residents expected, either in implementing the physical infrastructure of the LTN, or in communicating about the LTN since launch. I am disappointed about that.”

Cllr Clark added that he was working to ensure the LTN was properly signposted and was focused on reducing the impact of other road works in the area on traffic.

A Lambeth council spokesman said: “The Streatham Wells Low Traffic Neighbourhood trial is now live and aims to make the area safer, more sustainable and give everyone in Lambeth more equal access to their local streets.

“All the signage is out, being monitored and updated as and when it’s needed. Where infrastructure is damaged, it will be fixed as soon as possible.

“Damaging public property is a criminal offence and where damage is committed we will gather all available information and seek to prosecute.”

Pictured top: The remains of a “no motor vehicles” sign dumped in planter in Streatham (Picture: Robert Firth)

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