Voluntary Sector: Taking Action - SWAGS v New Forest authorities

Target: New Forest Road Safety Council, Hampshire Police, Hampshire County Council, and New Forest National Park Authority

Protesters: South Weirs Action Group For Safety (SWAGS)

Location: New Forest, Hampshire

Date: 6 June 2009

The lowdown

Residents in a New Forest village planned a series of protests following a large number of animal accidents. The South Weirs Action Group For Safety (SWAGS) has been formed to facilitate the action.

Why the protest?

Residents say 40 ponies have been killed or badly injured in collisions on Burley Road, Brockenhurst, in the past five years. The pressure group SWAGS is calling for the 40mph speed limit on all unfenced roads in the New Forest to be reduced to 30mph to improve safety.

What's happened so far?

SWAGS members last month handed a petition with more than 1,100 signatures to the New Forest Road Safety Council. The group staged a demonstration last Saturday to highlight the problem of animal deaths in the parish. Members are also planning to lobby Hampshire Police, Hampshire County Council and the New Forest National Park Authority.

How did the media cover it?

The local paper, the Southern Daily Echo, has been covering the group's protest since its launch in March, after a pony crashed through a car windscreen, injuring the driver and two passengers.

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