A South London street has been called atrocious by locals, who claim that speeding motorists and crashes have led to cars bursting into flames and residents being too scared to cross the road.

Winn Road sits in South East London, on the border of Greenwich and Lewisham boroughs.

The street has become known by residents for its large volume of traffic at rush hour and “atrocious” driving from motorists, with an 18-year-old losing their life on Winn Road after his scooter collided with a car in 2007.

Susan Thomas, 66, lives on Winn Road with her husband and son. She said that her family has already had numerous cars written off due to reckless driving on the street.

News Shopper: Winn RoadWinn Road

Ms Thomas told the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS): “My son’s car went up in flames, ours was a write-off.

"The car that hit it went into the wall over the road, went straight through her wall. Then last year, April time, our car got hit again. This time it was was four o’clock in the morning, a brand new car written off. We had to wait about four months for a new car. It’s been absolutely atrocious.”

She added: “I’m scared of crossing the road when I’ve got the grandchildren. The old boy next door, he used to go and get his newspaper. Now he’s too scared to.”

The resident said her neighbours have spent up to £2,500 repairing their cars after collisions.

Residents previously sent a petition to Greenwich Council to add traffic calming measures to the road in 2019, with council documents stating the road’s steep incline caused many drivers to break the 20mph speed limit.

Ms Thomas said: “Sometimes it’s speed racing and sometimes they just don’t give a monkey’s. They see 20mph and they just drive.

"My husband’s always screaming out to them to slow down. But we’ve been to the council, we’ve been to meetings. We’ve done everything and they don’t want to know because one side is Greenwich and the other side is Lewisham.”

Mike Pudelek, 76, moved into his home on Winn Road 41 years ago.

News Shopper: Mike PudelekMike Pudelek

The local said at a Greenwich Council meeting on October 25 that residents of the street and the nearby Mottingham Lane felt “very, very let down” by both Lewisham and Greenwich councils.

Mr Pudelek said at the meeting: “It is a source of continuous traffic. We’ve asked for traffic cameras to be installed.

"Will you put traffic cameras on Mottingham Lane, so you know the extent of the problem? We’re living with it, you don’t know what it is. You will never know what it is unless you put traffic cameras on Mottingham Lane.”

Labour Councillor Averil Lekau, cabinet member for climate change, environment and transport for Greenwich Council, said in a written response that the council was using data to determine areas in the borough for future traffic management schemes.

The cabinet member said she would not be able to comment on potential locations for the schemes until early 2024.

Greenwich Council documents said that only 70 metres of Mottingham Lane was in Greenwich borough and that Winn Road was largely maintained by Lewisham Council.

They added that the A20, which connects to Mottingham Lane, was primarily the responsibility of Transport for London (TfL). 

Mr Pudelek told the LDRS that Winn Road has effectively become a “relief road” for major routes such as the A2 and A20, and that issues on the street often hit a boiling point at rush hour.

He said: “You will suffer verbal abuse and you will find that commercial vehicles will overtake you on the wrong side of the road going down the hill, rather than go behind you because they want to go home and this is now their new rat run.”

The local said issues began on the street when a low traffic neighbourhood (LTN) was introduced nearby four years ago.

Since then, Mr Pudelek said the number of lorries on the road has also increased due to a building supplies site opening beside the A20 junction with Mottingham Lane.

Lewisham Council told the LDRS that evidence on the Lewisham and Lee Green LTN showed traffic levels on roads within and surrounding the had decreased by 46 per cent when compared to data before Covid.

They added that the number of serious road traffic accidents has fallen on roads within and surrounding the LTN.

He said: “If you walk the length of Winn Road, there isn’t a pedestrian crossing. So it’s nearly a mile long but there’s nowhere for a young mum with toddlers to take the children to school.”

He added: “We pay our council tax to Greenwich and they do nothing because they say [the road] belongs to Lewisham.

"And Lewisham say, ‘Well, you pay your taxes to Greenwich, there’s nothing in it for us’. So it’s an accidental issue of history.”

A Greenwich Council spokesperson told the LDRS that the authority takes an evidence-based approach to prioritising measures to reduce traffic on residential streets.

They added that the council cannot prevent people from choosing to drive over the speed limit, and encourages residents to report speeding vehicles to the police.

They said: “Winn Road is a boundary road split in the middle between the Royal Borough of Greenwich and the London Borough of Lewisham, however the road is maintained and primarily the responsibility of the London Borough of Lewisham.

"Boundary road maintenance agreements are historic, and council tax liability does not necessarily reflect who maintains a road.”

They added: “We are not aware of any proposals from the London Borough of Lewisham related to this issue, but we are always happy to engage with them on any proposals they may have.”

A Lewisham Council spokesperson told the LDRS: “We have been actively engaging with residents on Winn Road to address their concerns around road safety in the area.

"Following a meeting with residents this summer, a number of road safety improvements have been made in the wider area, including a new bollard to prevent vehicles cutting corners, the repair and relocation of a traffic island and the repainting of road markings.”

The spokesperson added that two electronic signs to warn drivers who are exceeding the speed limit to slow down were also due to be added to Winn Road.

They said the council would be using a data-led approach to prioritise areas most impacted by road safety issues given the authority’s limited funding.

They said: “We are currently in the process of developing a borough-wide programme of new road safety and traffic calming measures and the concerns raised by residents on Winn Road and surrounding roads will be fed into this process.”

A TfL spokesperson told the LDRS: “We’re determined to reduce road danger across London and we regularly speak to councils and communities across the capital to consider proposals for improving the road network. We are happy to discuss any local proposals for this location.”