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Row over proposal to close busy Telford road

By Mat Growcott | Donnington | Transport | Published:

A busy Telford road is at risk of a permanent closure after “pressure” from a small group of residents.

Horton Lane. Picture: Google StreetView

It is just the latest proposal that Horton Lane, in Horton, be closed to traffic after some complained that the narrow road was being used as a short cut by motorists.

A full closure had been suggested in 2002, 2008 and 2015, and now the idea has gone to public consultation again.

The idea gained some backing from Hadley & Leegomery Parish Council and residents – with the condition that residents in the area and emergency vehicles still had access.

But the support was quickly dropped when Telford & Wrekin Council said the only a full closure could be considered.

More than 60 people turned out for a meeting at Kynnersley Village Hall to discuss the issue, where many representatives of affected parish councils and residents opposed the move. Now there are calls for traffic calming measures in the area rather than a complete closure.

Councillor John Smart, chairman of Hadley and Leegomery Parish Council, said: “The parish council has on three previous occasions been asked if they support the closure of the road, in 2002, 2008 and 2015.

“It came before us again earlier this year, but again, we don’t think that it merits it because the amount of traffic is not large.

“It keeps coming back due to pressure from a small number of residents. People in Horton Lane have told me they don’t want it closed. He explained“We supported the closure of the road, but on the condition that there was access for the public of Horton Lane. Within a month we were told that wouldn’t be possible.

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“The parish council since 2002 has never supported a full closure as Horton Lane.”

Councillor Smart said that an extra 2.3 miles would be added onto the journey of anybody who usually uses Horton Lane – a total he estimates would result in 164 metric tonnes of emissions each year.

Kynnersley Parish Council clerk Katrina Baker said: “The concerns were based on speed, however traffic survey data collected since December 2016 proved there isn’t a speeding issue. There’s only been one accident down there, and that was someone reversing out of their home who didn’t see a push bike. That would have happened whether the road was closed off or not.

“The roads they intend to move the traffic to do have a speed problem. The reasons Kynnersley Parish Council voted not to support the closure and to continue to fight it is based on Telford & Wrekin’s own statistics. It means you’re just moving the problem to a worse area, an area that already has problems.”

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The closure of the southern side of the road was suggested to prevent danger to people and vehicles and to preserve amenities in the area.

“Kynnersley parish has put together a strong letter opposing the closure,” Katrina said.

“We’re encouraging all residents that will be affected to submit their own views on the closure.”

Russell Griffin of Telford & Wrekin Council said: “Telford & Wrekin Council is currently consulting residents on a proposal to close off the southern end of Horton Lane to all traffic to prevent it being used as a shortcut.

“The consultation runs until September 22 and all feedback is welcomed.”

To comment email highways@telford.gov.uk or write to Traffic Management & Street works, Telford & Wrekin Council, Addenbrooke House, TF3 4NT.

Mat Growcott

By Mat Growcott
Reporter - @MGrowcott_Star

Shropshire Star reporter

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