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Tory says residents are in the dark over A38 route changes
A SENIOR Worcester Conservative has voiced his anger over the Ketch roundabout row and says land should never have been handed over for a scheme “we’ve never seen, never heard of and we’re told doesn’t exist”.
Councillor Roger Knight, the Guildhall’s former environmental chief, says it is a “disgrace” that residents remain in the dark over changes to the the A38 route.
The veteran Tory is fighting proposals for a new-look roundabout which could see a green patch of land dug up to accommodate a slip road.
As your Worcester News reported yesterday, the city council has agreed to hand over 0.27 acres of green land to allow the project to progress.
But highways bosses at County Hall have yet to confirm any final plans, despite one drawing appearing on the internet showing a possible scheme, using the land involved, which they say is not a definitive plan.
More than 100 people signed a petition calling for the land transfer to be blocked.
Coun Knight, who represents St Peter’s, said: “I went to County Hall to have a meeting with the transport team and said ‘I want to understand what scheme you want to do, what schemes you’ve already rejected and why, and how you’ve got into this position’.
“It turns out they haven’t got a scheme yet, they are saying nothing has been finalised but they still want this land.
“It’s disgraceful that the city council is being asked to give away a piece of land for a scheme which we’ve never seen, never heard of and we’re told doesn’t exist.
“This may not be a big chunk of land for the city but it is for St Peter’s.
“This whole business should never have come before the city council until the county council had done it’s job properly.”
He added: “It’s rare that St Peter’s residents rise up and speak out about anything – the fact they have done so tells you everything about this.”
Earlier this year, developer Welbeck Land, which is looking to create a £400m ‘super village’ in south Worcester, revealed a drawing showing proposals for the Ketch island.
But despite the image sporting a county highways logo, the authority has maintained it is still some way off making any final plans public.
Residents in Orchard Close and Begonia Close say if the green stretch does vanish, it will diminish the value of their homes.
Peter Blake, head of integrated transport at the county council, says he is “working to put things in place” quickly.
“We will be bringing forward proposals to local residents and users of the route as soon as possible,” he said.