Fresh hope for bypass scheme

CAMPAIGNERS fighting for a vital bypass around their traffic choked town have welcomed fresh calls to push the vital scheme to the top of transport priorities list.

CAMPAIGNERS fighting for a vital bypass around their traffic choked town have welcomed fresh calls to push the vital scheme to the top of transport priorities list.

Concerned residents in Brandon have fought for 13 years for a bypass which they claim is vital to the prosperity of the region.

Now West Suffolk MP Richard Spring has urged the new leader of Suffolk County Council, Jeremy Pembroke, to push the bypass to the top of transport priorities in the county.

The news was welcomed by Brandon district councillor Eddie Stewart, although the secretary of the Brandon Action Group said he remained unconvinced of whether the Government would stump up the cash to pay for a bypass.


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Mr Stewart said: "I am heartened by Mr Spring's involvement and all the signs are that Suffolk County Council is behind us.

"But it is not in their hands and I am sceptical about whether the Government will approve it.

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"We have done everything possible to justify there is a need and the town is pretty much 100% behind us.

"The whole thing is an accident waiting to happen and one day the emergency vehicles won't be able to get through the traffic.

"It has been a nightmare for the whole village. I have been fighting for a bypass for so long that I will believe it when I see it."

In a letter to the county council, Mr Spring, who is also president of the action group, described traffic conditions as "truly appalling" and that the situation was getting "progressively worse".

The MP said: "Whenever I visit the town, I will not go after mid-afternoon because the traffic is impossible.

"The impact on the local environment and the quality of life of Brandonians is intolerable.

"As you review your transport priorities, I can only ask you to put the need for this bypass firmly at the top of the list. Your support is crucial to secure the necessary funding if a bypass is to be built."

And Guy McGregor, the county council portfolio holder for roads and transport, said the need for a bypass in Brandon was a pressing concern.

He told the EADT: "This is something I feel very strongly about. I think if we are canny in our approach and press all the right buttons, we can convince the Government this scheme is worthy of its support."

Last year, the bypass scheme was named as one of five proposals, which the county council pencilled in to push for Government funding between 2006 and 2011.

But fears were voiced that only a couple of the schemes would be successful in securing the cash.

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