A NEW footpath is to be painted on Ingrow Lane to help improve safety for children walking to and from Beckfoot Oakbank School.

Bradford Council is creating a ‘demarcation’ line along one side of the rat-run road because it is too narrow for a full pavement.

The footway will run from the junction with Oakworth Road, on the same side as the school wall, down to the bend at the junction with Elmwood Terrace.

There will be a traffic island near the bottom junction to slow traffic and enable students to cross to the other side of Ingrow Lane, where an existing pavement will take them downhill towards the Beckfoot Oakbank School side entrance.

Students will then have to recross Ingrow Lane to enter the school grounds.

The council’s Keighley Area Committee last year approved cash for improvements but it has taken several months for highways engineers to devise a suitable scheme.

The specialists worked closely with Keighley West ward councillors Adrian Farley and Cath Bacon, who had demanded safety measures following requests by Beckfoot Oakbank School and local residents.

The two district councillors this week insisted the footway, although not a full pavement, was the best possible scheme given the narrowness of Ingrow Lane and the amount of money available.

An early suggestion of a one-way system was rejected because it would have increased traffic using nearby residential streets.

Cllr Farley said: “There have been fears about child safety, school students walking up and down Ingrow Lane.

“It’s a busy network that a lot of cars and students use. There’s nothing at the top end where it’s quite steep.”

Councillor Farley said highways engineers had warned Ingrow Lane was too narrow for a standard-width pavement to be built.

Cllr Bacon said the stretch of Ingrow Lane below Oakworth Road was clearly dangerous for students.

She said: “In a perfect world with lots of money we would have liked a hard-standing pavement, but if we went down that route there would have had to be one-way system.

“We looked at alternate routes for a one-way system but it would have created lots of rat runs in residential areas, which would have been a nightmare.

“The new footway will be clearly marked and will provide a demarcation line between vehicles and students. We’re sure it will be enough to keep them safe.”

David Mortimer, who runs nearby Bracken Bank Stores, in 2014 highlighted the dangers posed to students by traffic on Ingrow Lane.

He this week said: “I welcome the addition of a footpath in this place. It will increase safety of students using the side entrance to Beckfoot Oakbank School.”