We're no slip road into city: east Bristol opposes J18a

February 01 2018

FURTHER opposition to the idea of a Pucklechurch junction on the M4 has come from people who fear it would bring additional traffic to Kingswood and St George.

FURTHER opposition to the idea of a Pucklechurch junction on the M4 has come from people who fear it would bring additional traffic to Kingswood and St George.

Labour councillors have launched a petition called "We're no slip road into the city”. They say the so-called “eastern option”, involving a new junction 18a and a link road from the motorway to the Avon Ring Road at Siston, would bring thousands of additional cars on to the A420 and Church Road. They say this would be devastating to public health and would make local travel at peak hours impossible. 

They are backed by Bristol East MP Kerry McCarthy in their call for South Gloucestershire Council to scrap the suggestion, which was put forward last summer in a £500,000 feasibility study carried out for the council and Highways England by contractors.

Ms McCarthy said: “We need to cut the number of cars coming into the city while providing a viable, affordable public transport system for people for whom driving is not essential, and not increase traffic on already congested roads. I am also deeply concerned about air pollution, which is a hidden killer, particularly in poorer inner-city areas.”

Councillor Pat Rooney, who representsWoodstock ward and is leader of the Labour group on South Gloucestershire Council, said:"Kingswood residents already suffer health problems due to excessive levels of nitrogen dioxide from traffic pollution. The Tory Government has told South Gloucestershire to put an action plan in place to reduce traffic along the A420. Adding a  new motorway junction at Pucklechurch would blatantly ignore Kingswood residents' health and well-being. Locally we are working hard to regenerate Kingswood, making it a better place to live and work.” 

Nicola Beech and Steve Pearce, Bristol city councillors for St George Central ward, which sits either side of the A420, added:  “Too little consideration seems to be given to impacts in Bristol. We will campaign hard for to abandon these plans to protect St George and the health of our community.

“Two Mile Hill is not a slip road into the city and St George will not support any proposals which brings more through traffic down the A420. East Bristol’s road network is already too congested. Apparently, the health of our constituents in Two Mile Hill and residents and visitors to Church Road are of no concern as they are to be compelled to continue to sit in mainly stationary traffic, breathing in the killer exhaust fumes of even more vehicles from the new motorway junction.”

The feasibility study, which came up with two eastern options and a western option at Emersons Green, provoked a large public response, which is now being analysed. 

Results of the consultation are expected next month, when South Gloucestershire Council’s cabinet will decide whether  there is a case to be put to the Department for Transport for the junction and link road. 

Supporters say it is needed to reduce traffic congestion and unlock economic potential in the area. The earliest it could open would be 2027.