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Sudbury Labour Party branch calls for more short-term work to combat traffic congestion

Official launch of parliamentary petition calling for a long-awaited Sudbury bypass.  Picture: GREGG BROWN

Official launch of parliamentary petition calling for a long-awaited Sudbury bypass. Picture: GREGG BROWN

The Sudbury branch of the Labour party is calling for more short-term work to combat traffic congestion in the town after discussing the proposal for a relief road.

South Suffolk MP James Cartlidge in front of the Sudbury Water Meadows. Picture: CONTRIBUTED South Suffolk MP James Cartlidge in front of the Sudbury Water Meadows. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

The branch says the bypass proposal is dividing the local population but it feels more information should be made available to allow “informed decision making”.

Since South Suffolk MP James Cartlidge’s online petition calling for a western relief road went live on October 3, two petitions against the plans have been launched.

The main concerns have surrounded the potential environmental impact to Sudbury’s historic water meadows.

A residents group in Sudbury is also crowdfunding to make a computer-generated animation of the bypass to give people more information on the project.

Spokeswoman Emma Bishton, who stood as the South Suffolk Labour party candidate in the 2017 general election, says improving critical junctions, providing better bus services and co-ordinating roadworks will all help ease the traffic situation in the short term.

She said: “Too many times we see two or three main routes into Sudbury dug up at the same time and the town is gridlocked. Even with a bypass there will still be chaos at times and someone should be scheduling these works to minimise disruption.”

She added that if a bypass is built it will take years to construct and with planned housing expansion, the routes in and around Sudbury will continue to be congested.

The branch is also calling for more information about the bypass proposal to ease concerns over its impact.

“This is obviously an issue that divides the local population,” said Mrs Bishton.

“There are some who clearly want a bypass, others who clearly do not. But one thing does seem completely apparent, that it is impossible to decide if we want it without knowing where exactly it will go, what it will look like, and how effective it will be.

“Give the local population that information, and let them make an informed decision. Saying there is ‘no proposed route at this stage’ does not help ease concerns or allow informed decision making.”

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