MP backs Axmouth bypass call

Village relief road seen as the only long-term solution to heavy lorry problems

AN Axmouth bypass remains the best long-term solution to protect communities from Seaton’s heavy lorry traffic.

That was the verdict of a hurriedly arranged public meeting with local MP Neil Parish, at Colyford, on Friday.

He was called to the village after openly supporting Axmouth’s call for a 7.5 tonne weight limit, to protect residents and safeguard property there.

Colyton parish councillors are concerned that such a move will simply transfer the problems of HGV traffic to their patch.

Members say there are similar bottlenecks on all the roads to Seaton.

And they agree with county highways chiefs that “there are no overall benefits imposing a weight restriction on the B3172”.

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At the meeting, attended by more than 100, vice chairman Alan Davis stressed a long term solution must be found as the heavy traffic to serve Seaton will continue after the major developments are completed.

A relief road for Colyford was, unfortunately, not practicable but he suggested it should to be fully considered for Axmouth.

Residents criticised planners for not addressing the highway infrastructure problems before approvals were granted. All the routes into Seaton had severe problems for HGVs.

And several gave graphic examples of traffic incidents at the Tramway crossing, Colyford Post Office and other locations. There was also concern that the proposed Stop Line Way cycle route would further increase the bottleneck at the lower end of Colyford.

The general consensus was that the B3172 route was the better one, although there was understanding for the difficulties faced by Axmouth.

Mr Parish agreed some sort of bypass around Axmouth, which did not upset the nature reserve, was the best solution.

He said he intended to put pressure back on the county council and Tesco – who had the money - to secure a better route for Colyford and Axmouth.