Spalding residents set for happy new year with council ready to call off bulldozers
Spalding Bourne Road residents are likely to have a happy new year with the county council poised to save their homes from the bulldozers.
Nine family homes were destined to be reduced to rubble to make way for the planned Spalding Western Relief Road.
Lincolnshire County Council's ruling Executive meets on Tuesday (January 7) to decide the line of the middle section of the relief road - and is expected to rubber stamp the December 9 recommendation of the Highways and Transport Scrutiny Committee.
That committee said the middle section should go through an industrial site, now occupied by Trojan Wood Ltd.
County council leader Martin Hill told us: "I think you would be safe to reassure people. I don't think there is going to be any change."
Bourne Road residents Frank and Catherine Roberts say they will begin the new year on an optimistic note.
In a joint statement, the couple said: "It's been a stressful 10 months but hopefully January 7 will bring the result we have campaigned long and hard for - quite simply that no-one loses their home, and that's all we have ever asked and fought for.
"We know everyone will be relieved."
The couple attended the Highways and Transport Scrutiny Committee, where Catherine was allowed to speak for a few minutes to outline the residents' feelings.
Afterwards, Frank said he felt residents had won the battle but hoped they would win the war too - a reference to January's Executive meeting.
An officer report to the Executive still recommends ploughing through the homes but also includes details of the Highways and Transport Scrutiny Committee's recommendations, which are the ones likely to be adopted by the Executive.
The report also says:
* Members of the (highways) committee highlighted the serious impact on the lives of local residents in relation to the potential planning blight which could be caused by adopting route option three (the route through the homes)
* Local councillors highlighted that while route option three would be slightly cheaper, "officers had not quantified the reported impact on the feelings and anxiety of local residents"
* A member of the (highways) committee "highlighted serious concerns in respect of the reported shortcomings in the notification of the scheme and engagement with local residents
The Executive is expected to give the go-ahead to the overall project, which involves building a £100million-plus road in five sections to link Spalding Common to Pinchbeck.
While it appears the Bourne Road residents are safe from the bulldozers, the relief road remains controversial.
Among our previous stories onwww.spaldingtoday.co.uk