The Weaverham Trust hosted an open meeting where CWAC representative David Saville gave a very lucid report on the Northwich Transport Strategy so far. The process and proposals were covered, with particular emphasis on those effecting Weaverham residents. The meeting was well attended with many questions asked and opinions offered.
The proposals have been divided into four categories. Immediate, secondary, longer term and on hold. The immediate effecting Weaverham is the priority to a better crossing at the Winnington/Barnton bridge. This should alleviate the extra traffic from the Winnington/Wallerscote developments through Weaverham going north. The development of the proposed Weaverham bypass along the old ICI rail link was a longer term (10 years +) prospect and would be referred back before any decision was made.
Shorter term projects were the immediate start on work to ease the junction to Gadbrook Park and the Hartford corridor past the educational establishments. Two pinch points in Northwich were identified for short term action; the junction over the swing bridge at the bottom of Winnington Hill and the junction on Venables Road by Lidl supermarket.
Attendees were very vocal about the obvious need for improvements to the Winnington/Barnton bridge and shared a common annoyance that most residents forsaw a problem when the Winnington/Wallerscote developments were agreed. A survey had been commisioned on the extra traffic flow and concluded that a few extra traffic lights would solve the problem. This is evidently not so. It was as asked (in jest) if the money paid to the consultant could now be recovered.
The fact that the new Weaverham bypass decision was delayed for at least 10 years allayed some fears but emphasised the differing opinions in the village.
Pro: People effected by the increase traffic alone Wallerscote Road and Well Lane wanted to press ahead with the bypass. It is very dangerous for residents at the bottom of the hill on Wallerscote Road to exit their properties.
It is hoped that the new bridge will solve some of the traffic problems.
Con: People in Walnut Avenue vacinity were unhappy with the possible increased noise and pollution. The majority generally were unhappy that a road along the old ICI railway would open up the green belt land between that and the village to building, which would overpower the village.
The CWAC representative, David Saville, stated that CWAC was exceeding its government imposed building targets and there would not be the same pressure.
The proposed new link from Winnington Lane to Barons Quay and the upgrading of the old Marbury road were on hold. However there were improvements for cyclists and walkers being considered.
There were vigorous complaints from the audience about the deteriorating condition of the existing road network by potholes, and it was suggested that the repair of the existing roads was more important than building new ones. The CWAC representative stated that it had not been possible to permanently repair the damage over winter due to the wet conditions, but now that the weather was drier, permanent repairs would be made. CWAC has a database of the potholes temporarily repaired and those awaiting repair, and all be tackled. People were asked to continue reporting new potholes. Those who cannot do this online can call the hotline 0300 123 8123