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Have your say on Whaplode A151 bypass, Sutton Bridge's Cross Keys Bridge, A16 and A17, Spalding relief road and other transport issues

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Now is the last chance for south Lincolnshire residents to have their say and shape a ten-year transport vision for the area.

The upgrade of Cross Keys Bridge, improvements to key roads, training HGV drivers and the need for more electric charging points all form part of Lincolnshire County Council’s draft Local Transport Plan.

Members of the public have until midnight tomorrow (December 1) to air their views on what’s needed - and South Holland District Council deputy leader Nick Worth urged people to take part in the consultation: “If you don’t respond, they are going to think it’s OK.

The Cross Keys Bridge (49013289)
The Cross Keys Bridge (49013289)

“It’s better to have a look at it and say I told you than no reply and have them say you were given the chance.”

He added: “Probably, of all the transport plans, there’s probably more to talk about than there ever has been.”

Earlier this year, we reported that a replacement for the 1897 Cross Keys Bridge - which spans the River Nene and forms part of the A17 - could cost more than £100 million.

Coun Worth said: “Cross Keys Bridge is probably the key bit of infrastructure in our part of the country that really needs sorting and it’s majorly expensive.

“So many people use it and it’s not getting any younger.”

He says it is important that this - and a bypass for Whaplode - are on the radar if Government funding comes available.

Residents in Whaplode want respite from the heavy traffic - with lots of lorries using the A151.

Coun Worth added: “Not only does it clog the area up but it slows them down too. They have targets to meet to get to the supermarkets. It’s for the longer term, probably - and I’m sure people would like it done quicker - but it needs to be part of the capital plan.”

The strategy sets out the need to improve the county’s roads at a time when about 100,000 houses are expected to be built across Lincolnshire.

About 1,200 lorries are said to leave Spalding every day - an example of the importance of haulage to the area, and a factor in persuading the authorities of the need to improve the A16 and A17.

Coun Worth added: “We are heavily reliant on transport - we serve a lot of the country with food and that sort of thing and every second counts if you are snagged up in a queue of traffic.”

Separate plans will be drawn up for Spalding and Holbeach in the coming years.

For the latter, there’s an ambition to establish a new Into Town bus, similar to those serving Spalding.

Surveys show Holbeach has more cars per household than other rural areas - with a lot of car journeys needed to bring people into the centre of the town from their homes for shopping at the likes of Tesco.

It’s hoped an Into Town bus would cut some of those journeys and reduce emissions - while also providing a link to the Food Enterprise Zone on the edge of Holbeach.

Coun Worth added: “We want to bring people working at the FEZ into the town centre to spend money in the town.”

How to take part in the Lincolnshire Local Transport Plan consultation

You can find the Local Transport Plan draft document, and complete the consultation online at www.lincolnshire.gov.uk/engagement. Anyone with queries should contact lft@lincolnshire.gov.uk or call 01552 782070.

The survey will close at midnight on Wednesday, December 1.

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