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M25 Junction 10 Decision Delayed By Secretary Of State

Published on: 15 Jan, 2021
Updated on: 15 Jan, 2021

The Secretary of State for Transport, has unexpectedly extended the deadline for the decision on the M25 junction 10/A3 Wisley interchange improvements to 12 May 2021.

Construction press say the delay to approve or scrap the scheme leaves the contractor, Balfour Beatty “hanging”.

The scheme requires special category land to be compulsorily purchased. A statement on the Highways England website said the four-month delay is to allow the Secretary of State, Grant Shapps, to consult further on identifying and acquiring land to compensate for the loss.

Cllr Colin Cross

Ward councillor Colin Cross (R4GV, Lovelace) said: “It is intriguing that the Secretary of State utilised his entire statutory three-month consultation period and on the final day pushed the decision back four months.

“At a recent discussion session between Taylor Wimpey [housing developer on the Wisley airfield site] and local consultees the proposed north-facing A3 slip roads at Burnt Common were discussed and there was consternation about the need for the A3 exit slip (S). The true need was for a southbound slip off the existing Ockham roundabout which would solve most of the potential local problems.

“We know Highways England are not keen to support this. The reality is that in a few years we will potentially be bringing together the existing A3/M25 users and the new residents of the former airfield site and thousands of the daily RHS Wisley visitors, who will all be kettle drummed at the Ockham Roundabout.

“This needs a serious rethink as it is not going to work using the current plans.

A spokeswoman for RHS Wisley said: “We will continue to engage constructively with Highways England and others to ensure that the environmental, economic and heritage impacts of this application are fully considered”

Tony Edwards, Wisley Action Group (WAG) committee member said: “The environmental impact of this project on the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area is a matter of the most serious concern and WAG has yet to be convinced that adequate emphasis has been placed on the effect of the scheme on the local road network.

“But a delay on the deadline for a decision until May is, effectively, a delay to September as the Wildlife & Countryside Act protects the nesting season – normally from March through to August.”

Cllr Julie Iles

County councillor Julie Iles (Con, The Horsleys) added: “More delay and uncertainty on what’s happening at this junction – I’m concerned that Highways England is now looking at new appraisal of a position on the Burnt Common slips which was agreed at the examination of the Guildford Local Plan.

“I’m working with officers at SCC and we’re following up with Highways England.

“I’ve also highlighted with Taylor Wimpey that they need to address traffic flows through Ripley village.

“Other parish councils are also concerned about the impact that any large development at the former airfield will have on their villages. So far we’ve had no detail on proposals for cycle routes or sustainable transport and they really need to make a step-change to offer suitable measures.”

GBC declined to comment.

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test 3 Responses to M25 Junction 10 Decision Delayed By Secretary Of State

  1. Jim Allen Reply

    January 15, 2021 at 3:55 pm

    While attempting to get traffic details re-Gosden Hill proposals back in late 2019. I had an interesting and revealing discussion with a senior member of Highways England staff; they were truly unimpressed with the proposals of GBC in respect of all junctions north of the A320.

    The problem is when all these things become ‘set in stone’, which turns out to be quicksand, the only way forward is to throw it all into a volcano and melt it down and start again.

    Cllr Colin Cross is quite correct, south-facing slip roads at Ockham make far more sense than north-facing slips at Send, as does a proper four-way at Gosden Hill, as opposed to “no way north save going south”. As for J10, four lanes into two as identified by SCC Highways director also is a safety concern

  2. Barnaby Lawrence Reply

    January 17, 2021 at 2:03 pm

    The whole situation around the M25/A3 junction and the Three Farm Meadows housing estates is showing such public indecision that as an observation these circumstances of delay, rescheduling, inappropriate roundabout planning applications all appear to point to there being a lot of behind the scenes powerful negotiating going on.

    I sincerely hope these discussions will be made public and that they are all completely legal, which I am sure they will be shown to be with no hint of any bribery or corruption anywhere.

  3. Ben Paton Reply

    January 17, 2021 at 6:23 pm

    The most interesting bit of this news is the reaction of our elected representatives. Look at how they seem to be falling into step with the Taylor Wimpey propaganda that this new town is a ‘done deal’.

    The residents of Ripley know that their village already suffers acute traffic problems. The massive expansion of RHS Wisley over the past ten years and the planned Junction 10 works will make their traffic problems much, much worse.

    On top of these longstanding problems, GBC advocates a new town in next door Ockham.

    Ripley residents should have no illusions. Highways England has repeatedly stated that it is not going to introduce south-facing slip road access to the A3 at the Ockham Park Roundabout.

    Developers only want the public purse to pay for such sliproads to mitigate some of the problems its new town plan would create.

    The solution is not to spend more money on access to the A3. It is to cancel all plans to build a new town two and half times larger than Ripley just 500m away.

    Instead of seeking “mitigation” of the effects, Ripley, East Horsley, Clandon and Cobham should be seeking to remove the cause.

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