A concerned mum is asking for a speed camera where her son was rammed into by a hit-and-run motorcyclist in Ravensbourne Park road in Catford. 

On June 23, the day before his tenth birthday, Tanya Manuell’s son was coming home from school with his sister when he started to walk over the pedestrian zebra-crossing by the top of Ladywell Fields while pushing his bike. 

A van waited for the pair, who live nearby, but as soon as the young boy started to cross, a moped rider overtook the van and slammed into the front of his bike, knocking him to the ground.  

His sister, who was just behind him, called out to warn him when she heard the engine and the instant’s hesitation meant the moped didn’t slam into his body.  

The moped driver responsible sped off without stopping, and while another motorcyclist followed him to try to get his number plate, he couldn’t catch up. 

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The crossing

The family has been told it’s unlikely the driver will be found, despite efforts from police, who said they need at least a partial registration to investigate further. No homes nearby with CCTV managed to catch the registration. 

The driver of the van jumped out to help and told the boy’s sister to ring her parents, while an ambulance was also called.  

Mum Tanya, a teacher, was on her way back from work when she got the call, during which her daughter said her brother may have broken his leg.  

She said: “When I cycled up the hill towards the pedestrian crossing I could see the flashing lights of the ambulance  

“The [van] driver was really kind, as were all the passers-by  

“A lot of people came and helped, one woman offered a bottle of water, there was a ring of people who were helping them.” 

Her son was “sore, badly bruised, and unable to walk initially” but his leg wasn’t broken and he is now moving around with ease. 

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His parents recreated the scene as a warning to locals

Tanya, who initially wanted to have CCTV installed but now believes a speed camera would be better, praised everyone who helped her children and were “so kind”.  

“When you get really disappointed in an individual’s actions and then you’re paid back ten-fold by the goodwill of others.  

“Everyone who came to the scene, they couldn’t have been more caring or more concerned. The two female paramedics were also really great,” she said.  

One of the comments she received on her petition to Lewisham Council was a suggestion that a better use of council money would be a speed camera. 

“That would mean that drivers would abide by the 20mph limit and if they didn’t they would be traceable and could be fined – then the council could afford the speed camera,” Tanya said.  

She added: “I’m really surprised at the response to the petition – very quickly people began to sign up and when I read the comments it was evident that a lot of people feel strongly about road safety. 

“If we keep in mind that the Government message at the moment is to walk and cycle as much as possible, it’s really important that other users of the road are keeping in mind that there will be more foot traffic.  

“One man wrote that he had a vision impairment and he really wanted to know that it would be safe to use that crossing as he’s found it difficult at times. 

“It’s just a case of making the road safer.” 

Tanya has spoken to her ward councillor and the cabinet member environment and transport, Sophie McGeevor, who has raised the issue with the road safety team at the council.  

Cllr McGeevor said: “This was a terrible incident, caused by a reckless and dangerous motorcyclist.

“Ensuring our streets are safe to walk and cycle is of the highest priority.

“We will continue to monitor the location and work with the police to enforce speed limits so that our streets remain safe for everyone.”