'We desperately need a relief road' say campaigners after HS2 confirms road closure between Leamington and Southam will remain in place for a further year
Local representatives have told HS2 they must stick to their original plan and build a temporary road - and compensate suffering businesses
A promise of a relief road must be kept to help businesses after HS2 confirmed that a main road between Leamington and Southam will remain closed for another year.
That was the call from local representatives after a meeting with HS2 representatives today (Wednesday) about the ongoing closure of the A425, which is affecting residents and businesses.
After confirming that the closure will remain in place until April next year, HS2 said they can no longer put in a relief road - which was the original plan - due to lack of land.
But local councillors and Jeremy Wright, MP for Kenilworth and Southam, have told them to go back to the drawing board and put forward plans for a relief road, as promised.
Cllr Tony Bromwich, one of the councillors at the meeting, said: "As a collective, we have asked by next week to be given plans on how much land is needed for a relief road with a view of seeking to obtain the necessary land.
"We has strongly represented the impact on local businesses and residents and HS2 for the first time have discussed possible financial recompense."
Cllr Bromwich has set up an email address for businesses that have impacted by the road closure - [email protected]
"Please supply as much information as possible about the financial impact so we can make the representations to HS2," said Cllr Bromwich.
"We can't promise success but we'll continue to fight the corner."
Mr Wright MP added: "“The original intention was for a temporary realignment of the A425 in order to keep the road open; we were told by HS2 Ltd that a full closure would enable them to complete their works much more quickly.
"As that no longer seems to be the case, at today’s meeting, I made clear my view in common with others that the original proposal should now be returned to."
A spokesperson for HS2 told the Courier and Weekly News: “We have met with local authority representatives and provided an update on HS2’s complex work programme at the Long Itchington Wood Tunnel south portal site.
"HS2 is working with the local authority to develop a solution to reopen the A425 as soon as possible, but reopening is dependent on several factors and we are seeking to agree updated working arrangements at the site.
"We are in ongoing discussions and will be able to provide a further update in the coming weeks.”