Councillor calls for £250million package of improvements to be pushed through as soon as possible

North Devon Council will be calling on the Secretary of State for Transport to try and fast-track improvements to the North Devon Link Road.

A motion by Councillor David Worden was unanimously approved by the council at a full meeting on Wednesday.

It follows a collision on the A361 on July 30 which resulted in the death of nine-year-old Keira Ball, from South Molton.

A second collision the following day killed Jane Baker-Lockett, 43, and her two 12-year-old children, James and Amy Gaskin, from Milton Keynes.

Speaking at the meeting, Councillor Worden said: "How many more deaths and serious injuries are there going to be before improvements are made to the road?

"Much of the problem lies in people getting frustrated because of slow traffic on a fast road and also dangerous turn offs, like the one at South Molton if you wish to go to North Molton.

"I dread to think how many more fatalities and life-changing injuries there will be before something is done.

"I've suggested a meeting with Devon County Council and the Secretary of State for Transport and an all-party group from our council to press the case.

"I believe that as councillors we have a duty to speak up for North Devon and push for something to be done before even more terrible crashes take place."

Devon County Council is putting forward a £250million scheme to upgrade the route between South Molton and Bideford, with an application to the Department for Transport on track to be submitted in December following a public consultation.

The proposed upgrades would see up to half of the route developed with alternating overtaking opportunities, compared to the current 10 per cent.

All right turn movements across the Link Road would be removed with junctions and roundabouts improved to increase capacity or allow turning traffic to filter freely from the main road.

Councillor Brian Greenslade added: "I am very pleased with what the county council has done to try and bring this program of improvements.

"I think given the recent records we need to put more pressure on the Department for Transport to step it up. There are ways they could help us speed up improvements."