19th Nov, 2017

Resignation sparks strategy fear

CONCERNS have been raised aover the future of Stratford’s Transport Strategy.

It comes after Stratford district councillor Robert Vaudry stepped down from his role as spokesman for infrastructure and housing.

Mr Vaudry resigned for personal reasons last week from his cabinet position of 18 months after launching the town’s transport strategy in February. Snitterfield councillor Peter Richards has been chosen to take on the role and see the transport strategy through to fruition.

The former Conservative councillor has said he will still be involved with implementing the plans to reduce traffic around the town if needed.

He told the Observer: “Transport, infrastructure and plans for affordable housing have become such a priority – and so time consuming – that I simply don’t have the time to remain focused on them to the extent necessary to reflect their importance.

“Residents often forget many councillors also have full-time jobs.

“I mentioned to Chris Saint (district council leader) about a month ago I was considering stepping down. He asked me to re-consider but once we launched the transport strategy I felt it was a good time to step aside.

“I am delighted that Coun Peter Richards has agreed to take on the role and will be only too happy to support him in whatever way I can.”

But Mr Vaudry’s resignation has only confirmed their belief the strategy needed to be taken back to the drawing board.

Stratford Residents Action Group (SRAG) spokesperson Marion Homer said: “Robert Vaudry’s resignation is confirmation that the transport strategy is in tatters.

“The strategy contains nothing to substantiate it’s claim that the so-called South Western Relief Road will ease traffic in Stratford. It contains no impact studies and no numbers.

“We believe residents deserve better and Stratford needs a proper bypass. SRAG are aware that Long Marston developer Cala has offered £30million to build the SWRR.

“All we ask is our councillors demonstrate this money is going to be spent wisely, and that all options are properly considered.

“All we can see currently is our local authorities being led by a developer to build a road that will make traffic worse and not better, and in so doing destroy a valuable riverside location and ruin the Greenway.

“Stratford residents have been poorly informed about these issues and SRAG will continue our leafleting and awareness campaign to ensure all residents understand the full implications of this poorly thought out piece of so called ‘infrastructure’.”

And Lib Dem district councillor, Peter Moorse said he hoped Mr Vaudry’s decision would not be a setback in sorting traffic issues in the town.

*THERE is still time for people to have their say about Stratford’s Transport Strategy.

The draft document proposes a range of approaches to ease congestion, reduce traffic in the town centre and improve air quality.

Two potential relief roads on the west and east of Stratford, revising town centre streets to reduce traffic and improve the environment for pedestrians, a focus on long stay parking out of the centre and developing the provision of park and ride are all included in the plans.

Visit askwarks.wordpress.com to see the plans and voice an opinion by Thursday (March 23).

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