Pensioner receives 'hideous' fine for painting zebra crossing on busy road

11 February 2021, 09:44 | Updated: 11 February 2021, 11:45

By Fiona Jones

Pensioner Laurie Phillips was fined £130 for criminal damage after he resorted to painting his own zebra crossing on the road for his disabled wife.

Mr Phillips, 78, Christchurch Dorset said he made multiple unanswered requests for the council to install a crossing, claiming that around 5,000 cars a day passed his house, making it difficult to cross the road.

Taking matters into his own hands, he rose at 5am and painted six white rectangular blocks on the road surface to form a makeshift zebra crossing. He also painted in a fake 10mph sign and illusionary speed ramps. 

Laurie Phillips was investigated by the police and summoned to an interview at the police station over allegations he had caused criminal damage.

Pensioner charged for criminal damage after painting zebra crossing for his disabled wife
Pensioner charged for criminal damage after painting zebra crossing for his disabled wife. Picture: Laurie Phillips

He told LBC: "Suddenly a large lorry appeared and started to wash it off...it took about an hour to wash it off and that was the end of that."

Mr Phillips said that in the four days it was on the road, "it had worked" and "it made a big difference."

"We still haven't got a proper crossing and we have a reluctant council who keep saying safety's their highest concern but they don't actually act to demonstrate, and I'm afraid actions speak louder than words."

Mr Phillips claimed the council were negligent in their obligation to consider disabled people in the area who would benefit from a zebra crossing
Mr Phillips claimed the council were negligent in their obligation to consider disabled people in the area who would benefit from a zebra crossing. Picture: Laurie Phillips

"Where the drop kerbs have been placed it's actually a blind corner," he told Nick, branding the road "hazardous" for all people trying to cross; disabled people, mothers and babies, pensioners.

Nick asked him whether, despite it being "hideous" he was fined, he was in some ways glad.

Mr Phillips told Nick he was grateful for the publicity and hoped the issue can soon be resolved.

He has a petition here: http://chng.it/NpmYVrbsNC