A seven-year-old boy was knocked down on a busy road where residents’ pleas for a safer crossing were denied, a councillor has said.

The boy was hit by a cyclist overtaking a bus towards the south of Shinfield Road and paramedics had to be called, councillor Pauline Jorgensen said – though she didn’t say when the incident occurred.

She said Wokingham Borough Council should “urgently reconsider” a decision last year not to install a crossing on the road for children going to nearby Crosfields School.

She said the decision was “an insult to parents who want to walk their children to school, or who would be happy for them to walk or cycle unattended if it wasn’t for the busy road they had to cross.

“The council is meant to be trying to increase cycling and walking to school and this is an obvious opportunity to do that.”

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But councillor Paul Fishwick – responsible for roads – said the council has to prioritise where it spends its money on making roads safer.

He said it does this by assessing each request for road safety measures, including by looking at how dangerous each road is and how many people need to cross.

Councillor Fishwick said: “We are very sorry to hear of the incident involving the seven-year-old boy. We hope he makes a full and speedy recovery.”

But he added: “As you know, the council has limited budget. Therefore locations for crossing sites are prioritised using an assessment process that includes data on the number of people crossing the road, the ease to cross the road, and the number and speed of vehicles.

“Unfortunately there are locations within the borough which come out of the assessment as a higher priority and so I cannot at the moment commit to funding this scheme.”

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The two councillors clashed over the demand for a crossing at a meeting of Wokingham Borough Council on Thursday, October 19.

Councillor Jorgensen said she was “surprised” that a location where there had been an accident was not considered a priority by the council. She also suggested Croslands– a private school – might be willing to fund a crossing.

But Councillor Fishwick replied that the council does take pedestrian accidents into account – and that the incident involving the boy would be a factor if the request for a crossing was reassessed.

He said: “Unfortunately from time to time accidents do happen on the highway network, and pedestrian personal injury accidents are taken into account. This is something which is new because it’s only happened in the last few weeks.

“If it’s reassessed at any particular time, that particular accident will be taken into account.”