Ottery mayor praises town's community spirit

Ottery traffic report

Traffic was gridlocked in Ottery last Friday - Credit: Archant

Ottery Mayor Vicky Johns has praised the town’s residents after they rallied round to help motorists stuck in horrendous jams after a crash closed the A30.

Police were called to Daisy Mount Cross, at about 12.20pm last Friday following a single-vehicle crash in which a man in his 50s died.

The road was closed for several hours to allow police officers to examine the scene with traffic being diverted through Ottery.

In a Facebook post Councillor Johns said: “I would like to personally thank all of the residents who took the mayhem in their stride.

“Those residents who offered to collect other people's children from school when their parents couldn't get there. The teachers and teaching staff who kept the children safe and happy whilst their parents struggled to get to them. The residents who offered bottles of water and the use of their facilities to motorists who were stuck, hot and frustrated due to the bedlam.

“My thoughts go out to the family and friends of the person who lost their life and to those who witnessed it, or dealt with the aftermath.”

The post received more than 600 likes and dozens of responses.

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One of those who replied, Liz Thompson, said: “Ottery is a special place with some really lovely people living in it. Kind, caring, compassionate and tolerant. It can be tricky driving through the town at the best of times but yesterday (the day of the crash) was crackers! So sad to hear about the gentleman who passed away at the crash scene.. makes you think about what really matters.”

Rowan Bradford, who was caught up in the chaos, said: “I was very grateful for the cup of tea in my car kindly given to me near Otter Nurseries. Such a thoughtful and kind thing to do.”

Cllr Johns lives in Alfington and is an East Devon District Council Independent councillor and an Ottery town councillor representing the North Ward. She is also one of the directors of Ottery Community Volunteers and The Ottery Larder. 

She said: “Ottery has a thriving community where, during adversity, people go out of their way to ensure that no one goes without or feels alone.”

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