Bromley Council has defended a road improvement scheme following calls for an “urgent risk assessment”.

The council has come under fire for creating a road with “poorly designed cycle lanes” in roads surrounding West Wickham station.

Tim Sowter, who grew up in West Wickham, started the petition after he became concerned over the safety of cyclists.

Mr Sowter said: “In early 2018, a consultation was published by Bromley Council on improvements to the roads by West Wickham Station which were estimated to cost £300,000 but were intended to improve traffic flow.

“This would be achieved by widening roads, moving traffic lights and removing cycle lanes in the road in favour of shared use with pedestrians.”

Work, which began earlier this year, has been “slow, messy, and disruptive” according to the local campaigner.

He added: “The surprise has been that the scheme looks very different from the original plans with strange swirling tarmac strips on the pavement which it turns out are supposed to be cycle lanes.

“My concern is that while there are interesting ideas that could be helpful for less confident cyclists, the design and execution is so bad it is potentially dangerous for both cyclists and pedestrians.

“It is a classic example of how badly designed infrastructure increases conflict and risk.”

Mr Sowter’s petition has so far been backed by just under 70 people at the time of writing

, with one resident commenting: “Who dreamt up this weird layout? It’s so odd! It’ll be a nightmare for wheelchairs, prams and those with visual / mobility issues. Needs sorting out ASAP!”

The theory behind the scheme is to “declutter” unnecessary street furniture and to improve the safety and look of the area.

In response to the petition, a council spokesman said residents will feel the benefit of the change once the scheme is finished.

He said: “The scheme to both improve road safety and reduce congestion will be completed fairly shortly now and everyone should then see the full benefits that this junction upgrade will bring.

“The cycle path at the junction will allow cyclists to better navigate the junction whilst still being controlled by upgraded ‘smart’ traffic lights, with this solution already being used successfully elsewhere and the different coloured road surface helping to highlight cyclists to other road users.

“Pedestrians may already notice the widened pavements, with even the narrowest part wide enough for a double buggy and the like.

“We will respond to feedback if we receive some but members might be interested to note that the scheme design also passed our road safety audit processes.”