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Councils must work on alternative plans
11:29am Thursday 21st June 2012 in Letters
Sir – We have reached the end at last.
After 27 years of objecting against the Cogges Link Road, I was naturally very pleased to learn that the Secretary of State for Transport has finally put an end to this unwanted white elephant.
The leaders of both county and district councils seemed somewhat surprised and disappointed by this excellent news. Perhaps that was because they hadn’t had time to read and digest the public inquiry inspector’s report?
If they had, Ian Hudspeth would have discovered, in paragraph 7.51, that: “The council has said that, if the Orders and Application for the CLR are not confirmed, then it would make an early start on preparations for the Shores Green Slip Roads”.
There is no need for you to “review our options and work hard with all stakeholders to come up with new ways forward to tackle the central issue of traffic through the centre of Witney”, Mr Hudspeth, your council has already stated that it will start work on SGSR preparations.
Might we know when, please?
Similarly, had Barry Norton had time to read the report, he would have noted in paragraph 7.55, that: “In terms of traffic matters, the submitted evidence points to the SGSR being a better solution than the CLR to the traffic congestion problems of Witney.” So the concerns over traffic flows, which he expressed on BBC Radio Oxford last Friday night, were, it seems, actually groundless.
It is time now for both councils to accept that the CLR is dead and to heed the clear recommendations of the Secretary of State. Rather than gloat or exhibit schadenfreude at the councils’ obvious disappointment, instead I simply call for both councils to put the mistakes of the past behind them and to move forward with a will to deliver the Shores Green Slip Roads scheme expeditiously.”
Nick Wilcock, Manor Road, Cogges, Witney