Grid­lock set to last for a MONTH

Rossendale Free Press - - Front Page - Char­­i­tymir­ @CharGreenMEN


TOWN cen­tre traf­fic chaos is set to con­tinue for a MONTH as high­ways work is car­ried out.

Di­ver­sions in Rawten­stall are in place while Lan­cashire County Coun­cil car­ries out work on Bo­cholt Way be­tween Tesco and the Queen’s Square Round­about to widen the road. The foot­path has also been closed off dur­ing the course of the work, sched­uled to run un­til Novem­ber 20.

Lan­cashire County Coun­cil (LCC) has apol­o­gised for the dis­rup­tion and say they are work­ing to ‘min­imise in­con­ve­nience’. Mean­while Rossendale coun­cil has called for ac­tion af­ter ac­cus­ing high­ways chiefs of “bad plan­ning” of the works.

Leader Alyson Barnes said: “Quite a few res­i­dents have been in con­tact with my­self and fel­low coun­cil­lors about the grid­lock in Rawten­stall town cen­tre – and it was es­pe­cially bad on Sun­day.

“This has been caused by road­works at both Bo­cholt Way and Newchurch Road tak­ing place ●● Part of Bo­cholt Way has been closed in one di­rec­tion as part of the works at the same time. Lan­cashire County Coun­cil is re­spon­si­ble for high­ways and we have been rais­ing the is­sue with them.”

She added: “We are dis­ap­pointed with the bad plan­ning on the county coun­cil’s part mean­ing that both road­works are be­ing done at the same time, caus­ing un­nec­es­sary dis­rup­tion and big de­lays in the town cen­tre.

“I have al­ready writ­ten to high­ways and the leader of the county coun- cil and the coun­cil will con­tinue to raise the is­sue to see if any­thing can be done.”

Karl Mather, who owns the Mather Gallery at the junc­tion of Bury Road and Bo­cholt Way, said he had al­ready no­ticed a de­cline in trade since the works be­gan on Oc­to­ber 16.

He said: “I am ac­tu­ally hav­ing a lot of trou­ble.

“Hardly any­body has been com­ing in. They have cut the foot­path off, and it’s cut me off. The pass­ing trade has gone.

“It’s re­ally bad and I have not had any in­for­ma­tion at all about it. With all the works that are go­ing on, it’s as if they are try­ing to cut Rawten­stall off in all di­rec­tions. And last­ing un­til the end of Novem­ber, that’s most of our Christ­mas pe­riod gone.”

Dad-of-one Phil Har­ris, from Helmshore, trav­els reg­u­larly into Rawten­stall to shop and says his jour­ney time has more than dou­bled since changes to the traf­fic light se­quence were in­tro­duced in May, and the ad­di­tion of the road­works means he is now avoid­ing the town.

Phil, 35, said: “It’s got the point now where I’m go­ing to dif­fer­ent towns.

“I fear to­tal col­lapse be­cause peo­ple are just avoid­ing it. It’s ab­so­lutely hor­rific now.

“First the traf­fic lights, and now clos­ing Bo­cholt Way and works on Newchurch Road have made into to­tal grid­lock.”

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