Written by ROB SMYTH
BURTON’S MP has told council chiefs to ‘get their heads together’ in a bid to put an end to a stand-off that has seen the town’s bollards out of action for more than a month.
Andrew Griffiths decided to step in after bosses at East Staffordshire Borough Council and Staffordshire County Council continued to disagree over who should pay for the operation of the controversial traffic management system.
The bollards have been left inactive since March after a decision was made that they would stay down until a deal was reached between the two authorities.
Now, the town’s MP has moved to put an end to the issue before ‘someone gets hurt’ by urging borough council leader Julian Mott and county council chief Philip Atkins to work together to reach a solution.
Mr Griffiths told the Mail: “People’s lives are at risk and the time has now come for everyone to work together to find a solution and I will be getting in touch with both sides and telling get their heads together to try and facilitate this and quickly.
“It is clear to me that motorists are now using High Street as if it was normal road and I fear for the safety of pedestrians who still see it as a pedestrianised zone.
“It is now time for the chiefs to come together as the people are being impacted by this stalemate. I think that is it time that they work together to find a solution to this problem and quick.
“It is a priority that people remain safe in the town centre but, at the moment, I feel this is not the case and it will not be long before someone gets hurt.
“After weeks and weeks of inaction, it seems as if some kind of intervention is needed. The people of Burton deserve answers and not silence on this subject.”
Despite attempts by the Mail, council chiefs did not provide a response to questions on the future of the bollards or react to the comments made by Mr Griffiths.
The borough council has been operating the bollards free of charge since it was introduced in 2008, as part of its CCTV operation. However, it now says it is no longer able to do so in the current economic climate.