Hadleigh residents urged to force Benton Street traffic woes back onto local agenda

Hadleigh High Street

Hadleigh High Street

A rallying cry has been issued to people in Hadleigh frustrated at the lack of movement in dealing with a notorious congestion hotspot.

The narrow northern end of Benton Street in the town has long been a cause for concern for local residents who think it is not suited to the volume of traffic it carries.

Now an activist from the Benton Street Interest Group has called on those with concerns to voice them at Suffolk police’s safer neighbourhood team (SNT) meeting tonight.

Roger Young lives in Benton Street and is unhappy it does not appear to be a key issue for the police or Suffolk County Council. He is also concerned at the number of lorries heavier than the 7.5T weight limit using the road.

“The traffic build up is increasing month-by-month,” Mr Young said.

“We’ve had Morrisons open and that brings a lot of people in. Benton Street is the only road from the A12.”

Mr Young said a chicane, where pavements are widened to narrow the road and force cars to give way, is one option put forward by the council.

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However he said “about a dozen” residents favoured making the road one-way – with opposing traffic being directed along Hook Lane.

“Parked cars create a chicane; this would clog up the road even more. There needs to be a strategic solution to the problem.

“Benton Street needs to be back on the agenda.”

A spokesman for Suffolk County Council said an experimental traffic restriction order was being prepared to create a chicane but no permanent changes would be made until residents had been given time to experience it.

He added any changes were months away rather than weeks.

The Babergh East SNT panel is at Hadleigh High School at 7.30pm today.