Local groups such as Nottinghamshire Area Ramblers, Rushcliffe Ramblers, Pedals and the British Horse Society are concerned at how dangerous it is for people to cross the busy A52 dual carriageway near West Bridgford.
They are looking for support from the public for their proposals to improve safety and help minimise the risk to local residents and school children.
With more people leaving their cars to walk, run and cycle during the pandemic, and the government pushing an Active Travel programme, it is vital that safe crossings are provided across busy dual carriageways.
The stretch of the A52 ring road between the Nottingham Knight and Wheatcroft roundabouts south of West Bridgford is particularly dangerous.
Highways England have promised controlled crossings will be included at each of the two roundabouts and, while these are needed, they are too far apart and will not solve the problem of people trying to cross the busy dual carriageway in between.
People are choosing to use public rights of way in the area as they are quieter and less polluted, but these paths cut across the A52 with no good line of sight of the traffic due to curves in the road and obstructions such as trees and signposts.
There is also an underpass halfway between the two roundabouts that would provide a safe crossing point, but it is not easily accessible.
Instead, people are taking their lives into their hands walking along a verge with their backs to the traffic while waiting for a gap between vehicles.
Concerned for the safety of children walking or cycling to school, and local residents wanting to access the countryside from their homes, the joint campaigning group want to see some simple solutions put in place.
They are asking for the well-used path linking the end of Landmere Lane to the Ruddington bridleway south of the A52 to be recognised as an official public right of way so access cannot be prevented in the future. They also want the underpass improved for users with the provision of connections to both existing bridleways.
The group sent a brief highlighting the problems and their proposals to Highways England, with a plea that these solutions be included alongside the major changes being planned at both roundabouts.
They are now calling for support from the public to use as evidence for their proposals. This includes responding to their petition on change.org asking for examples of issues faced crossing the A52, and also providing evidence that the link to Landmere Lane has been used by the public for at least 20 years – a requirement for it to be recognised as an official right of way.
Alan Wilson, chairman of the local Ramblers group, said: “Lives are being put at risk, and it affects the quality of life of people who live nearby. We know the benefits of active travel and how access to the countryside has helped people both physically and mentally during the pandemic – we hope this will continue long after things are back to normal.”
“We are not asking for an expensive bridge, or an extra pedestrian crossing that would impact on the flow of traffic. Instead we are asking Highways England to consider our low-cost solutions to improve safety for pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders, and we would be very grateful from any help from the public to build our case.”
Anyone using these crossings is encouraged to complete the petition with examples of any issues.
Users of the track from the end of Landmere Lane to the bridleway between Ruddington and the Wheatcroft site can also complete a short User Evidence Form.