Calls for action over Spalding traffic chaos

Traffic builds up along Matmore Gate in Spalding on a Wednesday afternoon before the school holidays . (SG131217-112TW).
Traffic builds up along Matmore Gate in Spalding on a Wednesday afternoon before the school holidays . (SG131217-112TW).
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Police have met with residents over growing concerns regarding traffic congestion near a proposed new school in Spalding.

The bottleneck of traffic along Matmore Gate and Mulberry Way is an accident waiting to happen, according to resident Wendy Chews (75).

She said: “We’ve got an excessive amount of cars parking along Matmore Gate, Mulberry Way and opposite the T-junction of Mulberry Way. It’s causing an obstruction, and making it dangerous.

“We’ve also noticed that students from the (Spalding) high school, once they’ve passed their test, are driving to school and parking on the streets nearby.”

Wendy has written to MP for South Holland and the Deepings John Hayes who she says has promised to look into the issues.

There are also worries from residents that plans for the new Springwell Academy Spalding on the site of the former Post 16 Centre in Matmore Gate will bring even more traffic.

The new academy, which will be for nearly 65 ‘challenging or vulnerable youngsters’ has been proposed by South Yorkshire educators Wellspring Academy Trust.

Wendy said she had no objections to the idea of the school itself, but feels it is not appropriate on the proposed site due to traffic concerns.

A spokesperson for Lincolnshire Police confirmed that an officer had met with residents and had also spoken with the high school’s management team to ask them to put out a letter regarding considerate parking, but that this is a request in goodwill and not something that they can demand.

We contacted Spalding High School for a comment but the school was due to break up for the Christmas holidays as we went to press.

However, head teacher Michele Anderson said in a recent public meeting regarding Springwell Academy that the reason for an increase in the number of high school students in the sixth form travelling by private car is to do with the “phenomenal increase in transport to school costs by the local authority” (LCC).

“It’s regretful that we don’t have enough parking capacity for students on the street and I take my relationship with local residents very importantly,” she added.

A spokesperson for Lincolnshire County Council said: “We can confirm that a consultation request for a planning application has been received and comments have been returned to South Holland District Council, regarding the Springwell Academy on Matmore Gate. The traffic impact has been assessed and we are satisfied that any resultant impact can be mitigated by an appropriate travel plan.”

○ The deadline for comments on the Springwell Academy plans has been extended until Sunday, December 31.

You can comment by emailing info@wellspringacademies.org.uk or write to Wellspring Academy Trust, Digital Media Centre, County Way, Barnsley, S70 2JW.

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