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Haulage firm Mick George gives £10,000 boost for road safety bid along Sixteen Foot Drain

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A £10,000 donation from a local haulage firm has helped boost the chances of safety barriers being installed at "forgotten corners" on a notorious Fenland river road.

Mick George handed over his firm's £10,000 contribution to Councillor Will Sutton, who received it on behalf of the Fenland Road Safety Campaign (Charlotte's Way) (FRSC) meaning there is now over £50,000 of funding in the pot for the installation of barriers on two notorious bends along the Sixteen Foot,which have claimed the lives of two women.

It is hoped the funding will spell success for the campaign's bid to win an additional £15,000 of county council money under its Local Highways Improvement scheme.

Councillor Will Sutton (left) receives the cheque from Mick George. (14997775)
Councillor Will Sutton (left) receives the cheque from Mick George. (14997775)

Three parish councils: Wimblington, Manea and Christchurch, as well as Fenland District Council and the Middle LevelCommissioners have backed the FRSC's bid, which is now ready for submission to Cambridgeshire County Council.

The campaign also has the support of local MP Steve Barclay and various local businesses and Police and Crime Commissioner Jason Ablewhite.

Mr Ablewhite has pledged £25,000 for the scheme, which will see safety barriers installed at the Honey Farm bend which claimed the life of Sharon Taylor, 54, from Sutton, who was on her way to Skylark car boot in October 2017 when her car ended up in the Sixteen Foot drain.

Her death re-ignited calls for safety measures at the bends, which had previoulsy claimed the life of young Christchurch mum, Karen Poole in 1994.

The parish and district councils as well as the Middle Level Commissioners have each promised £1,666.67. Businesses backing the scheme have pledged a total £1,750 between them and March mayor Councillor Rob Skoulding, whose family was close to Karen, has promised £250 from his mayoral fundraising.

Graham Chappell, chairman of FRSC, said: "Quite simply, we cannot thank Mick George, Jason Ablewhite, and all concerned for the support they have so kindly and generously given to the bid.

"They have strengthened the chances of success inmeasurably, and achieving that will make these long overlooked 'forgotten corners' of Fenland, safe, and free from the threat of further unnecessary loss of life."

Stuart Costello, marketing director at Mick George, said: "As a business, we always look to support road safety initiatives across the county.

"We are pleased to be working closely with The Fenland Road Safety Campaign helping raise the much-needed funds to instal safety barriers at the Honey Farm Bend.

"The efforts that have gone in to raising the awareness and importance of these road safety improvements by all involved in the funding bid should be applauded, and we are happy to donate £10,000 towards it."

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