Despite some people wondering whether a visit would actually materialise, credit has to be given to Cllr. Peter Mc Bride for not only turning up 20 minutes before the meeting time of 9:15 am, but for then staying until 11:30 am. He was joined by Liz Twitchett, Kirklees Operational Manager for Highway Engineering. 14 residents were able to attend.
From left: Liz Twitchett, Cllr. Peter McBride, David Rawling, Jimmy Paxton
David Rawling, resident and bypass campaigner, prepared a 6-page document with an extensive list of residents' concerns and a copy of the map showing the proposed 20 MPH zones. The visitors listened attentively, as David went through the details of 30 items in support of a relief road for Flockton.
The presentation with hand-outs, which you can download: Word or PDF was given and then responded to by both Cllr. McBride ( Kirklees Council, Cabinet Member for Economy, and West Yorkshire Combined Authority) and Liz Twitchett (Kirklees Operational Manager for Highway Engineering) with several major points.
The main areas that Kirklees Council are coming from are as follows:
1. You have to be seen to be getting value for money from road schemes, better returns etc., with developments, both residential and industrial, bringing much-needed income into the council, as well as meeting housing demands. Schemes such as that at Cooper Bridge. The relief road at Holmfirth was also discussed. Flockton's case would be much harder to justify.
2. The feeling within Kirklees Council, as expressed by their 2 representatives, is of one that the problem that is Flockton would only be moved elsewhere (i.e. to Waterloo, Dalton, and Kirkheaton, towards Cooper Bridge) with more traffic being encouraged off the motorway if there was to be a minor relief road. The long term solution, it was said, will be when the North Kirklees Orbital Route comes to fruition – at least 20 years away if passed. And a direct link between the two motorways, not the Link Road originally passed in the early 90s.
The Bypass Group are of the opinion that although it could well be of some benefit in the future, though not fully, ever increasing traffic levels and ongoing and possible future developments would still result in the problem that is Flockton, without any major improvement to the A637. The road is on the Government's MRN system after all and should be improved according to the guidelines, announcements, and publications. For those unaware, including Cllr. McBride in fact, the MRN is the Major Road Network. (And SRN is the Strategic Road Network, for anyone interested).
One of the other points of discussion was the changes being made to the HGV restrictions. The Bypass Group have since been made aware that an announcement was published in a reasonably local paper (and may well have been in others) regarding the changes. Please check out the TRO link here and respond with anything you feel is not of help, or otherwise. We have our concerns. Let's see if others amongst you agree. We can all play our part in getting Flockton a better, safer road after all. You can comment on these issues via our facebook page and our twitter. (Use the social media links floating over this page, or see all our social media links here).
You can download a summary of some notes made at the meeting, here, or view a pdf version here. (Please note it's a bit of a draft and is still under review).
See other supporting documents of interest on our Documents page.