Thousands of residents are celebrating after the council removed cones from under Worcester Park Bridge.

In response to the global pandemic, Sutton Council introduced cones to improve the safety for pedestrians and cyclists on Central Road.

However, the measures caused anger across the borough, with reports of emergency service vehicles struggling to get through.

A petition urging the Council to U-turn the scheme raked in more than 3000 signatures signed with complaints of increased traffic and pollution.

Your Local Guardian:

The petition which was launched by Richard Johnson, of Worcester Park Residents Association, stated:

"The impact of this act of sabotage has created huge idling tailbacks of traffic for miles, massive increases in air pollution for all (including pedestrians), huge delays for public transport and gigantic, pollution emitting obstacle courses of vehicles, for cyclists to navigate.

"Conegate is a complete failure, for everyone, especially the cyclists and pedestrians it was allegedly claimed to help! Most worryingly, emergency vehicles and teams are frequently being caught up and delayed."

The petition was followed by a public meeting held by Councillor Tom Drummond at The Brook Worcester Park, with reports of around 100 people in attendance on August 29.

Your Local Guardian:

Speaking on the decision, a council spokesperson said: "The Council introduced measures in Central Road and the Worcester Park railway bridge in response to Covid-19 in May.

"The aim was to make walking and cycling safer as public transport capacity was limited and to ensure social distancing.

"In response to resident feedback, the Council made changes to the scheme in July. These made the walking and cycling areas more secure and improved the signage for drivers.

"As schools start to return and more people go back to work, the Council decided to make further changes this week. We have been listening and monitoring traffic levels since May as the lockdown has eased.

"We have adapted the scheme in line with resident feedback and maintained better provision for cyclists.

"Traffic jams, air pollution and dangerous conditions for pedestrians and cyclists along Central Road have been key concerns for residents in the Worcester Park area for years.

"The high levels of traffic and the railway bridge can make Central Road unwelcoming and dangerous. This scheme will continue to help make our streets safer, more active and greener."