A safer A505

Oliver Heald MP is pressing the Herts County Council Highways team to bring forward their proposals for the A505 as a matter of urgency, and has told them he would campaign for any necessary funding bid to Government. He has asked for an urgent briefing on progress with their timetable for action. He is also asking the County Council for a public information campaign to highlight the need to drive with care on the A505.

Oliver continues to be approached by concerned constituents about the safety of the A505. A further accident occurred last week. He has campaigned with councillors and local residents for improvements to the road over many years and pays tribute to the way the Royston Crow has highlighted this important issue for our area.

The Hertfordshire County Council (HCC) survey of the A505 was started following pressure from Oliver, Tony Hunter and Co Councillor Fiona Hill. About 2 years ago, there had been accidents at Slip End and Odsey and they brought the full Herts Highways team and the HCC Portfolio Holder Co Cllr Terry Douris out to walk the road where they pointed out dangers and accident sites. The resulting survey was completed about a year ago and since then the County Highways team have been working up a set of options, for example, modelling the effects of closing a particular junction, reducing a speed limit in a particular stretch or all the road, looking at the effect of roundabouts in particular positions on traffic behaviour and other road safety considerations.

Commenting Oliver said: “The time has come for proposals to be brought forward and I will happily argue the case for any bid for Government funding. I am pressing for an urgent briefing on the timetable for action and asking for a public information campaign to highlight the message to drive carefully on this road.

“Over the years my pleas together with councillors and residents have led to some improvements, but more is needed as recent accidents have shown. My campaign for a roundabout at Odsey led to the introduction of the Westbound speed cameras about 10 years ago. The vegetation is more severely pruned and cut back after we took up the issue of sight-lines at cuts and junctions. Signage has been improved, including the No Right Turn and No Entry signs as you exit the Ashwell turn, to try to stop people turning into the Eastbound lane when they intend to turn right into the Westbound lane. Co Cllr Fiona Hill has pressed tirelessly on this and since he was elected, Steve Jarvis has made common cause on these issues.

You can be sure we will continue to press the case.”