MP demands end to speeding on country lanes after woman knocked off horse

MP Maria Caulfield and Beverley Berrill
MP Maria Caulfield and Beverley Berrill

MP for Lewes Maria Caulfield is demanding an end to speeding on country lanes after a Ditchling woman was knocked off her horse.

Beverley Berrill, 51, was in hospital for ten days after a car and her horse were in collision in Spatham Lane, Ditchling, on September 28, last year, which resulted in the death of her beloved horse Norsey.

Residents in support of the petition after the collision

Residents in support of the petition after the collision

Since the collision, Ms Caulfield started a parliamentary petition calling for Spatham Lane to be reclassified as a quiet lane, along with two lanes nearby; Underhill Lane and Streat Lane.

The petition has gained 1,300 signatures. She was due to present it to the House of Commons on March 21.

She said: “I was delighted by the response of Ditchling residents. Not only did I experience great enthusiasm on the doorstep as I was gathering signatures but I was very impressed by the number of people who posted their own copies of the petition to my office.

“My constituents clearly agree that speeding on country lanes is dangerous and I look forward to parliament considering their wishes for action to be taken.

“I want our lanes to be safe for all users, whether those on horseback, cycling or on foot. These three lanes are a starting point in this journey to make our roads better for local residents.”

Mrs Berrill had been trotting home to Burntinholmes Livery Yard, where she has lived and worked for the past 20 years, when the collision happened.

She has since been trying to raise awareness of the danger on country roads.

Quiet lanes allow for easier and safer use of roads by multiple users, including vehicles, equestrians and cyclists.

This typically includes a reduced speed limit and other signs which request drivers to be mindful of other road users.