Couple’s garden wall in Ashwicken knocked down by a motorist for eighth time

Carol Sweeney by her front garden wall which has now been knocked down eight times MLNF14AM01008
Carol Sweeney by her front garden wall which has now been knocked down eight times MLNF14AM01008
Have your say

A couple have seen their garden wall smashed down by a motorist for the eighth time in 12 years – leaving them in fear of someone getting hurt.

Carol and Robert Sweeney, of East Winch Road, Ashwicken, have seen cars slide off the road into their property so many times that they are now too frightened to allow family to linger on their driveway.

Mrs Sweeney, 55, said: “It is my fear that somebody is going to really hurt themselves. Thankfully no children have ever been involved so far.

“It is quite scary every time it happens. I wonder whether a warning sign of some sort would help. The more people that are aware of it the less likely it is to happen, hopefully.”

Mr and Mrs Sweeney returned home on Sunday, December 21, to find the wall demolished again.

The driver – a young woman from East Winch – was shaken but unhurt and had put a note through their door.

The couple now face the usual wait of numerous months for the damage to be assessed and insurance quotes to be processed.

Mrs Sweeney said: “The builder said we need a double skin wall but that would probably be more dangerous if someone hit it so I am not prepared to do that.

“My daughter said don’t have a wall at all but then they will probably hit my house.

“My neighbour has a hedge and people have been through that. The problem then is that you have to wait for that to grow and establish itself again.”

The couple got through last winter without the wall being knocked down but it had happened seven times in the previous ten years. They believe black ice builds up on the road in front of their home, which is in a shady position.

Adrian Bramwell, parish councillor for the area, said: “We as a parish council and most residents are very concerned about the speed limits down this road. We have been making considerable representations to try to get it reduced from 40 mph to 30 mph and perhaps 20mph past the school.”

Karl Rands, Norfolk County Council’s area manager for highways, said: “With limited resources available, traffic calming measures are only considered at locations when there is a history of accidents where there have been serious injuries. Thankfully East Winch Road has a good safety record and therefore does not make it a high priority to investigate in terms of casualty reduction benefits. Because this is a minor road, it also does not make up part of our 2,063 miles of gritting routes.”