Parish council says designers have "dismissed" its suggestions over new schools
PUBLISHED: 17:49 22 January 2015 | UPDATED: 17:49 22 January 2015
Littleport Parish Council says it has "serious concerns" about the design of plans for the new secondary and special schools in the village.
Councillors believe that many of the roads leading in to the proposed site are not suitable for the volumes of traffic expected and say that Cambridgeshire County Council has “dismissed without consideration” many of its alterative suggestions.
Chairman, Councillor Diane Boyd, and vice chairman, Councillor James Lee, are calling on residents to make their views known to the county council “without delay, in the strongest possible way”.
They said: “We urge the general public to view these plans either online or at the Barn in the Main Street, Littleport.
“If they too are concerned, then they should make their views known to the county council without delay, in the strongest possible way.
“We need to all stand together on this. It’s up to all of us to ensure the project is right from day one, and suitable access is important for the safety of all.”
The parish council said it “fully supported” the need for new schools in the village but said that access to the site, off Camel Road, was not suitable.
Councillors said that Camel Road was being proposed as the main point of access for all students and staff to the new school but said that the road was “not suitable to carry the volume and type of traffic that this proposed development will bring”.
Councillors also said that Elmside, which will provide access to the special school, will become “very busy” with traffic.
As part of the plans, it is also proposed to knock down the existing leisure centre and rebuild it as part of the schools development.
But the parish council says the land that the centre stands on belongs to them and was gifted to the village on the condition that it was only used for sports and recreation.
As part of a series of alternatives put forward, the parish council says that the main point of access to the new school could come via Wisbech Road or via a new road linking Camel Road to the bypass.
A spokesman for the county council said: “The county council has already held a series of consultation and community events, from which it is clear that there is strong community support and enthusiasm for the new secondary and special schools to be established in Littleport.
“The council welcomes the parish council’s public statement of its support for the schools, but recognises the transport and access issues they have raised and the need for these to be considered further. It is in the process of doing this. When a planning application is made there will be full consultation on the proposal as part of the submission.”