Just over a week ago, we wrote this piece – What the actual f**k are Thurrock Council trying to achieve with this exercise – in response to this exercise by Thurrock Council – Council mocked for £288,000 pavement and road safety work that ‘beggars belief’ and is a ‘total waste of money’. The exercise in question being starting to spray warning signs and directional arrows on pavements in and near shopping areas to encourage people to carry on physically distancing in order to ‘stop the spread’ of the COVID-19 virus. Work which was funded through the Department for Transport’s Emergency Active Travel Fund and the Reopening High Streets Safely Fund.
This exercise prompted us to write this longer post on being forced into the new (ab)normal) – Gaslighting.
Suffice to say, when the stencilling was first seen and reported in the local media, a fair few of the good folk of Thurrock laid into the council with some venom on social media. Comments ranged from questioning why the money couldn’t be spent on actually mending pavements across the borough, many of which are in a bit of a state, through to not taking kindly to be patronised and cajoled by a council that isn’t exactly well respected!
Well, according to this report – Thurrock Council steps back from street signage scheme – it would appear that in the face of ‘public mockery’, the council are backing away from full implementation of this signage. In the words of Thurrock Council: ‘The one way signage is now being removed. No further signage will be installed and the pavement marking will be naturally washed away over time’
For those of us who were somewhat sceptical of lockdown and were kicking back against the new (ab)normal, we’ll take this as a small by welcome victory in what’s going to be a long war of attrition. We’re not going to big ourselves up by claiming that our posts linked to above made any difference – this one’s down to the ordinary folk of Thurrock telling their council in no uncertain terms they had well and truly over-stepped the mark this time. Long may this continue:)