A new crossing planned for a busy school route will not improve safety, parents have claimed.

Essex County Council has announced a toucan crossing will be built on Hatfield Road, Witham, near to the roundabout junction with Gershwin Boulevard.

The crossing is being paid for by the developer of the 700 home estate at Lodge Farm, off Hatfield Road, however parents say it will not help residents of houses further down the road get to the nearby Chipping Hill Primary School, in Owers Road, safely.

Vicky O’Connor has been campaigning for a crossing to be installed in Hatfield Road for nearly two years, in response to a number of accidents and near misses on the road.

“The new crossing is being put in by Aldi which means it is not in the location we need it to keep the children safe,” she said.

“Safety is more of an issue more than ever. They are building a lot of houses near to Aldi and it is increasing the amount of traffic using the road.

“The crossing is only going to help people who live in the new estate and people going to the shop.

“It is at least 400 metres from where most of the parents and children cross the road.”

Hatfield Road does not meet the criteria for a school crossing patrol.

An Essex Highways spokesperson said the crossing was installed under a planning consent agreement.

“It will be made operational when the new housing development is occupied,” the spokesman said.

“The Braintree Local Highways Panel is looking at a proposal for next year’s programme to extend and improve the existing pedestrian island in the middle of the road, to enable more people to cross together.”