A ROAD safety charity has criticised Solihull Council’s decision to remove roadside tributes after six weeks.
From September 1, memorials such as flowers, toys and messages left at the scene of a fatal accident must be taken down after six weeks, or two weeks after a funeral has taken place, the Solihull News revealed this month.
Any tributes left past the deadline will be removed by the council and taken to a dedicated memorial area in either Robin Hood or Woodlands cemetery, where family members will have six weeks to collect them.
However, Brake, a road safety charity, has said roadside tributes are ‘hugely important’ for families of crash victims and urged the council to adopt a more personal approach.
Nick Scarlett, development officer, said: “Brake believe that councils should work with families on an individual basis to meet their needs and that blanket restrictions such as those proposed by Solihull Council are not appropriate.
“The roadside is a hugely important site for the families of road crash victims, with many bereaved families wishing to pay tribute to loved ones near the site of their death.”
He added that Brake could talk to local authorities on behalf of bereaved families through its support services.
Councillor Ted Richards, cabinet member for transport and highways, said: “We do not underestimate the grief that is caused by the loss of a loved one and we understand that roadside memorials can be a great comfort and play an important part of the grieving process. We have to try and balance this need with the safety of road users and also the distress that can sometimes be caused to other residents who live nearby to memorials.”