Bridge Over The River Avon – Stratford-upon-Avon
I went to see the presentation of the new SWRR (Stratford South Western Relief Road) today which includes a new bridge over the River Avon just to the South West of Stratford
As well as seeing the CALA Homes presentation I also wanted to hear what exactly SRAG (Stratford Residents Action Group) were campaigning for and whether they were just against the bridge in the proposed location or against a bridge full stop.
It took me 20 minutes to get from the Banbury road to the meeting
Ironically it took over 20 minutes to get from The Banbury Road to Stratford Crowne Plaza where the presentation and meeting were being held due to the Traffic on the existing bridge 🙁
What Did I Learn From the CALA Homes Presentation of the SWWR
1. The reason why the bridges have to be so high is not because of the river but to allow for any future train tracks on the Greenway.
2. The reason why the road has to swing so close to the homes on Luddington Road, Stannells Close is due to a small area that is a SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) between Stratford Racecourse and Luddington Road.
3. The road is a lot smaller than I expected, single lane, 50mph speed limit
4. Racecourse entrance is to be just a junction rather than light controlled or roundabout.
5. The junction at the Evesham road will be built whether the SWRR goes ahead or not as this is part of the Shottery Relief Road
6. The current proposal on the Evesham road junction is a roundabout, CALA’s preferred option is that it will be a traffic light controlled junction
7. As well as a roundabout on the Shipston Road there will also be one on the Clifford road.
8. Street lighting along the SWRR – didn’t find anything out about this
9. The main thing I learnt from the presentation is – This is not a ring road or bypass but just a small link road, which unfortunately has a long elevated section, had it just been in a flat field it would be almost innocuous.
10. I suspect even if this road gets built there will still be a need for another road further West within the next 20 years – See the alternative mock-up here on Google Maps
What Did I learn from SRAG
1. They make it clear that they are opposed to the proposed location.
2. They are not as clear about if are opposed to another location.
3. 2 people I spoke to gave the impression that if a better location was proposed they wouldn’t object
In my opinion the main reason SRAG don’t make it clear what exactly they are campaigning for is they know it will cause an East verses West Luddington divide.
The main things I learnt are
1. The proposed SWRR is far smaller than I thought and it looks like a temporary measure until a proper ring road is built (hence why they call it a relief road and not a ring road).
2. SRAG are totally against the proposed route but I suspect if it was further West a large number of them wouldn’t object so much.
3. I see confrontation brewing between Luddington residents and Luddington Road, Stannells Close residents.
CALA will do the minimum they need to do to get the 2nd phase of the Long Marston village approved, which if the Council allow it will result in a 2nd rate solution (You can’t blame CALA for this all blame should be attached to the Council)
If the Council are brave enough they should stand fast on obtaining a proper bypass (otherwise we will get these same arguments within the next 20 years).
My Final Conclusion – It Makes no difference to me
Despite being Stratford born and bred and still having parents living in Stratford I have given up on Stratford.
I much prefer Shipston for virtually everything now and will occasionally go to Leamington or Banbury for big shops or browsing
I just hope that whatever they do doesn’t have a detrimental effect on the South of the river and that not too many Stratfordians realise how much nicer Shipston is and start moving out of Stratford to it.
Here are just 10 reasons why the Alternative SWRR may be seen as a better route.
10 Reasons Why The Alternative SWRR Could be a Better Option
1. A better link to the new Long Marston New Town.
2. Moved away from racecourse.
3. Moved away from flood plains.
4. Moved away from majority of housing in Luddington road.
5. A smaller elevated section crossing river and rail track.
6. Joining on to Evesham Road well out of town.
7. A better route to eventually link through to Alcester Road.
8. Is an actual bypass rather than a so called relief road which provides a way of bypassing Stratford completely.
9. Provides 3 spur routes in to Stratford (via Evesham road, Alcester road and Birmingham road)
10. Far more suitable for larger vehicles.