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Robin Beresford, of The Street, Kennington, says homes are being shaken apart by lorries thundering over speed bumps

By Samantha Williams

Lorries thundering over speed bumps in Kennington are comparable to a small earthquake, according to residents.

Robin Beresford, 75, of The Street, Kennington, claims that heavy vehicles travelling over the speed cushions along Ulley Road and The Street are slowly but surely destroying his Grade II listed home.

He says that as a result, cracks have started appearing in his walls and roof, objects in his house move and his windows vibrate.

Robin Beresford with his neighbour Chris Busbridge
Robin Beresford with his neighbour Chris Busbridge

“Every time something heavy goes past the building shakes, the bed shakes,” he said. “We’ve had people stay with us and they say they can feel the vibrations.

“The worst offenders are lorries or vehicles with double wheels on the back. We now have cracks in our walls and tiles, and I know other people who have cracks too.

“When I was in Italy I felt a tremor so I know what an earthquake feels like. I would compare it to a three on the Richter scale.”

The Richter scale assigns a number from one to 10 to quantify the energy released by an earthquake.

Sixteen sets of speed bumps run along the length of Ulley Road and The Street.

Robin Beresford's damaged roof
Robin Beresford's damaged roof

The measures were introduced more than 10 years ago by Kent County Council to prevent speeding in the road, which has two schools on it, residential homes and Kennington Cricket Club.

Mr Beresford, who runs a goldsmith and silversmith business with his son Martin and lives with his wife Margaret, was among others who originally campaigned for something to be done about the speeding in the road.

He said: “I instigated traffic calming measures in the road. The reason we wanted them is because lorries used the road as a rat run. The Street was a speed trap; they used to rocket down here.

“We asked for simple 30 mph signs but they didn’t listen. They installed the speed bumps instead, initially saying it was a two year trial. But they never came back.

Speed bumps on Ulley Road, Kennington, Ashford
Speed bumps on Ulley Road, Kennington, Ashford

“Last year, the bolts in the humps were shaken loose and needed tightening. The road surface isn’t great.”

Mr Beresford says he has written to KCC, Ashford council and MP Damian Green about the problems with the speed humps.

He adds: “I’ve tried to get the ones outside my house removed but KCC say they can’t do anything. Humps are fine in housing estates and cul-de-sacs where lorries don’t pass.

“The modern traction on vehicles today is superb. The suspension means cars don’t even know if they’ve hit a bump, therefore the humps aren’t effective. They are useless in my opinion and a waste of public money.”

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