A DECISION to remove hedges to improve road safety has caused residents to bristle.

A hedge in Fords Lane, Colchester, has been cut down to make room for construction of a link road.

It is part of Mersea Homes’ Chesterwell Wood development.

Martin Goss, borough councillor for Mile End, said residents were upset by the hedge’s disappearance.

He said: “I have had five complaints.

The impression was it was going to remain, but much of it has been removed.

“Residents were annoyed and upset. The worst thing is they were never notified before it was cut down.”

Mr Goss said Mersea Homes was following instructions from Colchester Council and Essex County Council.

He said: “Another hedge is being planted, but the one in question had been there for years. It would take five to ten years for a new hedge to get to the same size and thickness.”

Rodney Bass, county councillor responsible for transport, said: “The work is part of a countywide initiative to improve road safety on all Essex’s Priority One routes.

“We are cutting back overhanging hedges to improve sight-lines and prevent road signs from being obscured.”

Mersea Homes declined to comment.