TRANSPORT bosses have received criticism from hundreds of residents over a controversial £12.5m scheme designed to improve roads in Headington.

People in the area have raised fears over loss of parking, safety concerns for schoolchildren, more impending roadworks and whether the money is being well spent in the Access to Headington scheme.

A consultation on the plans closed last Friday and local groups, residents and councillors have urged Oxfordshire County Council to consider the views of residents ahead of a decision due next month.

Oxford City Councillor for the area Altaf Khan said: "I can only hope that the views and comments from people in the area will be listened to.

"People that live here have already compromised on a lot of the plans but they are the ones that know the area the best and know what will work so they should be listened to."

The scheme has already been publicly criticised for proposing to remove parking bays on busy roads such as Windmill Road and Headley Way.

Windmill Primary School, which sits right at the heart of the proposals, was not consulted on the plans and its governors say the scheme raises huge safety concerns for pupils which need to be addressed.

Governor,Geoff Sutton said: "The loss of parking could double the risk to hundreds of children walking to school each day.

"At the moment there is a heavy flow of traffic along Windmill Road, with cars going about 20 miles per hour but if you take away the opportunity to park on the road, drivers will inevitably speed up.

"If a child is hit at 35 miles per hour they may well die, which is why we really want the council to think about what is the safest option for residents."

More than a thousand people responded to the initial plans in August last year and this time around county council head of transport David Nimmo Smith had said he suspects all concerns lie with the detail on each particular road.

He said: "While we can't promise we will be able to sort out all the concerns but we will work hard to make sure the right balance is struck between those who live there, those who work there and those who drive through there."

Mandatory on-street cycle lanes have been introduced as part of the scheme as well as shared cycling and pedestrian paths in an attempt to encourage people not to use cars.

Oxford Civic Society chairman Peter Thompson supported the aims and concept of the scheme but called for the council to delve deeper into the detail.

He said: "It's absolutely clear we need better access to the hospital for visitors, staff and patients.

"But a compromise needs to be found, it is not going to be a win-win situation for all involved.

"We would like the council to look closer at the detail, they need to get things right first time."