‘It took a horse to get run over’ – accident black spot needs improvement | Horse racing news

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Part of Michael Bell’s team at St Mary’s Square crossing

By David Milnes, Newmarket Correspondent

A racehorse crossing in Newmarket where Katie, the daughter of trainer George Margarson, had a collision with a car while riding is made safer after a campaign.

Place Sainte-Marie, a T-junction in the middle of the city, is a notorious accident black spot and one of three sites slated for major safety upgrades in the city later this year.

Filly Luna Wish was at one point on the hood of the sedan with Margarson somehow keeping the partnership intact, although one of his stirrups smashed a hole in the windshield.

Despite cuts to her legs, Luna Wish was given the all-clear, as was the pilot, although the driver was left in shock after the incident in June.

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The car involved in the accident in St Mary's Square last summer

The car involved in the accident in St Mary’s Square last summer

Suffolk County Council is also planning improvements to the Bury Road level crossing, adjacent to the Multiples, which is the busiest in the town and can accommodate more than 1,000 horse movements a day.

Lindsay Devin, training ground manager at Jockey Club Estates, said: “These two crossings were chosen because they are very dangerous as they are both in busy areas. Proposals for St Mary’s Square included new road surfaces and markings warning of the level crossing, new railings and user-activated flashing warning signs.

There must also be a clearly marked and properly paved area for pedestrians to cross at the junction of the two roads.

George Margarson said: “My daughters Rosie and Katie have campaigned for these changes since that accident last summer and we are all over the moon. It took a while to come and they did a great job because it’s not easy to fight the board.

He added: “It took a horse to get run over to make changes and I know they’re also improving the level crossing on Bury Road which will be helpful.”

There are also plans to make part of the town’s horse walk near the Fordham Road level crossing safer for riders, parents and children after a recent incident involving James Ferguson’s horse.

The horse had been spooked by a child on its way to the nearby St. Louis Catholic Academy and had slipped, landing on its rider, who had been treated at the scene before being taken to hospital.

Margarson said: “The school crossing is the one we also claimed because there are a lot of children crossing there and that has been a problem before. I think they were against any modifications to the ramps until this unfortunate incident and now the school is in favor of it.

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