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Councillor who said she’d paint (now removed) bike lane black slams “ignorant” people who painted it back

Twitter user asks whether “this furious councillor is the same furious councillor who threatened to paint out the cycle lanes?”

A Conservative councillor who last year offered to paint over a temporary cycle lane because Brighton & Hove City Council was not removing it as quickly as she wanted has slammed “ignorant” people who painted the road markings back in.

The makeshift markings on Old Shoreham Road have been painted in at the same location formerly occupied by the cycle lane, which the city council introduced last year in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The cycle lane, which proved hugely popular with local cyclists, was removed in September – but has now reappeared thanks, presumably, to guerrilla activists.

But Councillor Dawn Barnett is calling for the people who painted in the new lane to be tracked down and prosecuted, claiming that it will cause collisions.

She told the Argus: “I want it removed asap. While it is left there, it is going to cause accidents.

“I would like it removed as soon as possible and if we find out who done it, I would like them prosecuted.

“It is going to cause an accident because people are unsure.

“It was taken out because it wasn't safe and it wasn't used and now they are putting in scrappy lines.

“There must be cameras along there to see who was around.

“The people that did it – well they are ignorant,” she added.

But one Twitter user asked the Argus: “Can you confirm or deny if this furious councillor, is the same furious councillor who threatened to paint out the cycle lanes on Old Shoreham Road?”

Brighton & Hove City Council announced last August that it would begin removing the lane the following month – but that wasn’t soon enough for Councillor Barnett, who said she’d be happy to go down there and paint out the markings herself.

> Councillor offers to paint over cycle lane lines to speed up Old Shoreham bike lane’s removal

“I’m sorry it’s not being removed quicker than that after it went in overnight,” she told the Argus at the time. “I’ve offered to go along there with a tin of black paint to cover up the white lines.

“I understand highways have got to remove the high signs and burn off the white lines but I don’t want it dragging on.

“The council could go along there and get the posts out. It shows willing and lets people know it is happening,” she added.

The local authority said at the time that it would remove the lane “as soon as possible,” but pointed out that “this involves a considerable amount of planning to make sure we fulfil legal requirements in terms of removing the road markings and wands, reinstating the carriageway and repairing it where necessary, removing or changing the signage and adjusting traffic signals in a safe and co-ordinated manner.

“It is also dependent on our highways contractors, who tend to only have limited availability at this time of year,” the council added.

The council has said that it will remove the unauthorised markings, and is urging people not to reinstate them.

Last month, we reported how parents of local schoolchildren had set up a “bike train” to get them to school safely along Old Shoreham Road, and have launched a petition calling on the council to put the lane back.

> Parents set up ‘bike train’ for school run after council rips out bike lane (+ video)

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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