Work is continuing behind the scenes to make a dangerous A59 junction safer.
Ribble Valley Borough Councillor Ian Brown, who is also a county councillor, has been lobbying the county’s highways officers about Clitheroe’s notorious Pendle Road junction after plans for a roundabout were put on hold.
Housing developers Taylor Wimpey, who has been given outline planning permission to build up to 1,040 homes on land at Higher Standen Farm, were supposed to build a roundabout at the junction prior to work starting on the new houses.
However, earlier this year, Taylor Wimpey asked if it could be built after the 50th home was sold on the site, with members of Ribble Valley Borough Council’s planning and development committee approving the deferral.
Frustrated by this delay, Coun. Brown has been lobbying the county’s highways officers. And he recently asked if highways could improve the safety of the junction now and claim the cost of the work back from Taylor Wimpey.
“It would take one site meeting, some commonsense (which for years has been notably lacking), and cost about £2k to put some workable temporary measures in place,” said Coun. Brown. “I mean some hard hitting warning signs, a temporary speed limit on the A59 and some barriers to narrow the A59 near the junction, so that overtaking is impossible past turning vehicles, plus signs on Pendle Road advising drivers of the lurking dangers.”
However, in response to Coun. Brown’s appeal, a spokesman for the county council said the authority does not have the financial resource to be able to provide highway infrastructure to satisfy the needs of specific development and that the onus is on the developer and not on the public purse.
Local Liberal Democrat councillors recently started a petition calling for Taylor Wimpey to start work on the roundabout before any houses are built.