Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

North Devon Link Road bid approved by councillors

PUBLISHED: 13:10 11 October 2017 | UPDATED: 13:19 11 October 2017

Devon County Council has agreed a bid that could see work start on North Devon Link Road improvements in 2020. Picture: Tony Gussin

Devon County Council has agreed a bid that could see work start on North Devon Link Road improvements in 2020. Picture: Tony Gussin

Archant

Councillors agree bid to upgrade North Devon Link Road before it goes to the Government - but a row is brewing over who pays what

The £88million bid to upgrade the North Devon Link Road has been given the green light by county councillors.

At the Devon County Council (DCC) cabinet today (Wednesday) councillors voted to support a bid seeking £78m of Government cash to improve the road.

It would see the widening of the A361 from Barnstaple to South Molton, as well as more overtaking opportunities plus an ‘urban four lane road’ past Barnstaple.

All ‘uncontrolled’ right turns would be removed for the 35 kilometres between Bish Mill and Buckleigh Road, Bideford.

With only £300m available through the Department of Transport’s Local Majors Fund, DCC is recommending the upgrade be in phases and DCC has said it could contribute £10m.

North Devon Council leader Des Brailey (right) and opposition leader Brian Greenslade are at odds over the district councils' contribution to the link road scheme. Pictures: Submitted North Devon Council leader Des Brailey (right) and opposition leader Brian Greenslade are at odds over the district councils' contribution to the link road scheme. Pictures: Submitted

2018 planning application?

It is hoped a planning application can be submitted in late 2018. A full business case would then be submitted to Government in 2020, which would potentially allow construction to start in late 2020.

Barnstaple Liberal Democrat county councillor Brian Greenslade has welcomed the decision.

He said: “This is very welcome news for North Devon and we must all put our shoulders to the wall to get this bid accepted by government.

“Delivering this package of improvements, which could start as early as 2020, will when complete improve journey times from the M5 to Barnstaple and Bideford and beyond.

“It will also improve road safety in particular at junctions like Bonners Bridge, West Buckland and Bishops Tawton.”

Contributions row

But Mr Greenslade has attacked what he calls the ‘limp reaction’ from North Devon Council and Torridge District Council.

He claimed initially there was no contribution from either council for the scheme but after writing to NDC leader Des Brailey he later learned there would be support via section 106 money.

In a joint letter to Dave Black, DCC transport chief, district council leaders Des Brailey and Jane Whittaker said contributions would come via section 106 money paid by developers and from schemes associated with the A39/A361 corridor.

Mr Brailey said: “These monies are required from developers to assist with road improvements that are associated with the North Devon Link Road.

“To this end, we will work hard to help achieve funding so that the project can move forward.”

But Mr Greenslade said: “This simply is not good enough. A major infrastructure package backed by 83 per cent who responded to the consultation needs a firmer commitment than this.”

Mr Brailey hit back, saying: “We are very grateful to both the county council and to our MP Peter Heaton Jones who are doing their best to move this forward. It is important for councillors to help support this project and not try to find ways to undermine it.”

Related articles

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 14:19

Users of Bideford Lighthouse Project have told the Gazette how it has changed their life - as it secures funding for a new peer mentor scheme.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:10

The bid for funding for a £250million package of improvements to the North Devon Link Road will be handed in to Department for Transport on Monday

Read more
Yesterday, 16:30

Free family event with live music at Ilfracombe’s Landmark Theatre on Thursday, December 21

Read more
Yesterday, 14:33

Historic ship needs a £3.75m Heritage Lottery Fund bid to be successful if it is to sail again in 2019

Read more
Yesterday, 11:15

The Lundy Company has been fined £30,000 for safety failings after a worker was seriously injured when falling through a roof.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:24

Firefighters free a woman who was ‘medically trapped’ in one of the cars

Read more
Wed, 17:27

Will festive video go viral? St Michael’s Nursery in Barnstaple is racking up the social media views for its Christmas video debut

Read more
Wed, 13:30

There are proposals for a cycle bridge across the North Devon Link Road from Seven Brethren in Barnstaple

Read more
Wed, 12:04

New leisure centre at Seven Brethren approved by council planning committee this morning (Wednesday)

Read more
Wed, 09:27

A teaching assistant is fundraising to bring her husband’s family to Devon for Christmas after their home was ravaged by a tropical hurricane. Can you help?

Read more

Local Weather

Rain

Rain

max temp: 7°C

min temp: 3°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications