Highways authorities urged to note local hot spots

Published Friday, 10 July 2020

Highways authorities are being urged to make sure that local transport hot spots, including the A5, are fully considered when delivering any future local road improvement schemes for the area.

The call came after the Borough Council responded to a consultation by Leicestershire County Council that sets out to determine the road and transport priorities for the area, known as the Leicester and Leicestershire Strategic Transport Plan.

Councillors noted persistent issues with bridge strikes on the A5 between Dodwells and the M69 which is one of the matters the A5 Partnership’s A5 strategy aims to tackle.

Councillors have asked that the A5 Partnership and the A5 strategy is acknowledged as part of the Strategic Transport Plan to help to make investment in the A5 a priority.

Councillors restated their objections to the proposal to connect the A46 into junction two of the M69 over concerns this could result in additional traffic along Sapcote Road and through Burbage, Hinckley and Earl Shilton. The council’s response has also asked that district and borough councils in Leicestershire are involved in work on any changes to the A46 including any new link roads, particularly in any sustainability appraisal and analysing the costs and benefits to local residents.

Councillors also asked for the impact of development along key routes in the borough including the A47, the A447 and the A444 to be monitored so that any necessary improvements can be identified as part of the plan.

Rail transport improvements in the plan were welcomed, with councillors supporting proposals for an improved rail service between Leicester and Birmingham including a direct line to Coventry and more frequent stops at Hinckley as well as pursuing an additional railway station between Nuneaton and Hinckley, known as Nuneaton parkway station. However, members asked that the plan also includes working with partners on the business case to reopen the Leicester-Burton passenger line and particularly stations at Bagworth and Desford.

Other green initiatives were also welcomed including a walking and cycling strategy and measures to boost electric vehicle use, which will contribute towards tackling the council’s climate change emergency. Councillors have asked for a role in identifying future infrastructure improvements to improve access to walking and cycling facilities as well as measures to install electric vehicle charging points all over the borough including in the rural areas.

Executive Member for Planning at the Borough Council, Councillor David Bill said:

The Borough Council’s response to this consultation brings out the main points of concern for this area, namely supporting the need for improvements to the A5, the A47, the A447 and A444 as well as pressing for improvements to rail services through Hinckley and restoring passenger services to the Leicester to Burton route. 

At the same time we have restated our objection to the A46 joining the M69 and sending additional traffic along Sapcote Road in Burbage. I would urge the highways authorities to take note of these concerns.