Boost for Suffolk holidaymakers

SUFFOLK holidaymakers can today look forward to soon being within easier reach of one of Europe's fastest growing airports.With the opening of the A120 dual carriageway in Essex due next week, travelling times from Ipswich to Stansted and the M11 will be cut substantially.

SUFFOLK holidaymakers can today look forward to soon being within easier reach of one of Europe's fastest growing airports.

With the opening of the A120 dual carriageway in Essex due next week, travelling times from Ipswich to Stansted and the M11 will be cut substantially.

For many people in the region, the growth of Stansted into London's third largest airport has created jobs and boosted the local economy, but its main artery, the A120, had acquired notoriety with its chains of traffic clogging up the single-track route and streaming through villages.

The final section of the relief programme - an 11-mile stretch between Dunmow West and Braintree - is hoped to signal a new era for access to Stansted.

Around two million travellers from East Anglia head for Stansted each year, and with controversial expansion plans at the airport the road was in need of an upgrade.

An Essex County Council spokesman said: "The new A120 will greatly benefit both residents in Essex and those from the surrounding counties who wish to come to Stansted Airport. The road will cut journey times and access to the M11 significantly"

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In the past, the dual carriageway scheme has been dubbed an "environmental disaster", with many complaining that more Essex countryside has been ripped to make way for the new road.

But Hazel Smith, of Essex County Council, which manages the scheme, disagrees.

She said: "This is going to be an incredibly welcome route. The local villages have been plagued for years by heavy traffic so this will relieve it in the area.

"It is an important strategic route through to the airport for business and simply for residents in the surrounding areas because they will have a much better quality of life.

"Throughout the whole of Essex, local business will have a vast route through to the airport."

Essex County Council is currently fighting Stansted's expansion plans in the courts, arguing that they will bring an unwelcome amount of traffic through the area.

What do you think about the dual carriageway plans? Do you think the growth of Stansted is good for the region? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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