The chief executive of the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership says better road links with both the ‘Midlands Engine’ powerhouse and Wales would mean major companies would look to move to Shropshire.
Graham Wynn backed the Shropshire Star’s Dual It campaign calling on the Government to dual the stretch of road from the north of Shrewsbury to the Welsh border. The partnership of private business and civic leaders is already working to improve the region’s infrastructure and has praised the Star for its initiative. Mr Wynn said it was nationally important to dual the A5.
“Leaving London or Holyhead you drive on motorways or dual carriageways until you reach Shropshire where you are faced with miles of single carriageway road,” he said. “You don’t have to be an expert to realise that this is going to create a bottleneck.“For Shropshire is it so important for inward investment. We don’t want Shropshire to be a corridor, we want it to be a thriving economic success. A better road network can unlock potential from a much wider area. If the road network from the Midlands Engine continues west to Shropshire we will benefit. There will not be enough capacity in the Midlands and companies will be keen to base themselves in Shropshire.”
He said the road infrastructure was also vital was businesses already in Shropshire. “At the moment it is inhibiting businesses who have to use the road to bring raw products in and take finished parts out”, he said.
As a leading member of the Midlands Connect regional infrastructure body Marches LEP has regular talks with the Mid Wales Partnership.
“The A5 is part of the transport structure between England and Wales,” he said.
“I am very pleased that the Shropshire Star has launched this campaign and I urge people to sign the Dual-It petition.”
The petition requests that the road be included within the Government’s Road Investment Strategy 2 so that it is upgraded to a dual carriageway for its entire length.
Petition forms are available to sign by calling into the Guildhall in Oswestry.