Call for action on HS2 proposed road closure

Press Release

Published on 21 October 2020
Archived on 21 November 2020

The Leaders of Stratford-on-Avon District Council and Warwickshire County Council together with local ward Councillors have called for a delay to HS2's proposed 9-month road closure to part of the A425 in Southam.

The proposal is to close part of the A425 between Southam and Leamington from the Dallas Burston Polo Grounds to the Ufton Crossroads until July 2021 to enable HS2 work to be carried out; a change from the original plans to re-route the A425 with a temporary road.

At a meeting to discuss these concerns it was agreed to ask for a delay to the start of the works until the first week of 2021 to:

  • Allow sufficient time to organise signage and communication for the road closure.
  • Allow businesses to make alternative arrangements, particularly for deliveries.
    Haulage firms such as Skelcher's have said that the proposed detour is likely to cost them between £5-8k per lorry over the period.

It was agreed that starting in the New Year will not necessarily delay the works by two months, due to poor winter weather, darker nights and the two week festive break. Leaving the closure until January and moving into spring will see longer daylight hours which would support condensed working allowing the works to still finish on schedule by the end of July.

Delaying the road closure would also reduce any potential Christmas disruption for residents and businesses, particularly important during the current climate for businesses and jobs.

Agreeing to this delay will allow for extra time before works start to ensure no works take place on Fosse Way / Welsh Road West to guarantee access to Southam and the surrounding villages with no disruption to potential junction improvements at Harbury Lane / Harbury Road junction and the Gaydon / Lighthorne Heath development.

It would also allow time for the reinstatement works on Welsh Road West and around Deppers, Harbury, Bishops Itchington, Ufton and Bascote to take place. Additional roadworks are also planned for Snowford Hill from Long Itchington to the Fosse which is going to be closed for a further three weeks taking out another alternative route.

The group has also requested to see the financial figures behind this and well as the environmental impact assessment of the new proposals that are different to those approved by Parliament.

Cllr Tony Jefferson, Stratford-on-Avon District Council commented: "We had a very constructive meeting with some sensible proposals put forward. We will ensure that our Warwickshire MPs are fully briefed on this matter as well as involving the HS2 minister. We also want to ensure that the HS2 complaints commissioner is made aware of HS2's actions.

"This proposed closure will have a devastating effect on residents and the local economy, which is still recovery and coping with the Coronavirus."

The Councillors representing the residents of Stratford-on-Avon at the meeting were Cllr Tony Jefferson, Leader of Stratford-on-Avon District Council, Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Leader of Warwickshire County Council, Cllr Andy Crump (Southam South), Cllr Chris Kettle (Bishop's Itchington) and Cllr Tony Bromwich (Southam North).

Contact details

Stratford-on-Avon District Council
Elizabeth House, Church Street,
Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire,
CV37 6HX
Tel: 01789 267575

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Last updated on 21/10/2020