Weight restrictions could force lorries into villages

TRAFFIC chaos could hit roads in Cheddar and Draycott according to village leaders. Parish councillors in the villages are in uproar after a neighbouring

TRAFFIC chaos could hit roads in Cheddar and Draycott according to village leaders.Parish councillors in the villages are in uproar after a neighbouring authority imposed weight restrictions. Councillors in North Somerset imposed restrictions on the A368 from Blagdon to Churchill amid protest from residents who want to stop lorries travelling along the rural road.But parish councillors in Cheddar and Draycott say the only other alternative route for lorries is down the 'unsuitable' A371 which runs through their villages. Cheddar Parish Council chairman Peter Lythgoe said: "We have made it clear to both highways authorities that Cheddar and Draycott are not suitable for heavy goods vehicles (HGVs)."If councils can impose weight restrictions like that, then on that basis we could do the same on the A371 in Cheddar. "The councils in Somerset all need to work together to decide on unilateral action."Cheddar Parish Council will be sending letters of protest to the North Somerset highways authority, Department of Transport and Wells MP David Heathcoat-Amory. They have also asked Somerset County Council to provide statistics on the number of lorries using the road.Members of Rodney Stoke Parish Council, which is also responsible for the village of Draycott, feel equally strongly.Chairman Terry Andrews said: "We do not have a problem with lorries making deliveries to local traders as this is to be expected. What we object to is lorry drivers using our village roads as an access route to somewhere else."Draycott especially has very narrow roads and when lorries travel through they often hit their wing mirrors on walls. When they pass each other you can see they are almost touching."The Cheddar Valley Parishes Transport Forum, made up of parish councillors,is due to meet next week to talk about the HGVs that use the area and how unsuitable roads are still being abused by trucks.


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