Gridlock mayhem at retail park

QUEUE rage, prangs and rising blood pressure - it's all in a day's shopping for motorists visiting a gridlocked retail centre in Ipswich.

Simon Tomlinson

QUEUE rage, prangs and rising blood pressure - it's all in a day's shopping for motorists visiting a gridlocked retail centre in Ipswich.

Consumers today spoke of hour-long waits and car park feuds while trying to get out of Suffolk Retail Park.

The shopping centre in London Road and its access road is often snarled up with nose-to-tail traffic during busy periods and it has prompted calls for improvements to be made.

Ken Butler, of Henniker Road, Ipswich, waited for nearly an hour to leave the car park earlier this month and saw one motorist spin his car while trying to jump the queue.

He said: “You could see everybody was getting frustrated trying to get out of here. I bumped this woman in a car behind me and she was swearing at me. I told her to calm down because everyone was getting angry.

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“The traffic lights at the junction don't let enough cars out. There should be another slip road out somewhere.

Penny Root, from Stowmarket, has suffered similar problems. She said: “One Sunday I came here and it was absolute gridlock. Every time I come here I think 'here we go again. How long are we going to be sitting here?' It is a nightmare.”

Paul West, the Ipswich borough councillor responsible for transport, has asked engineers at the council to see if anything can be done to solve the problem.

He added: “I acknowledge it is an issue. The engineers told me that they had concerns about it at the time the development was built.”

A spokesman for Ipswich Borough Council said: “We are aware of the traffic problems in the area and are looking into finding solutions to relieve the congestion, particularly at weekends.”

- Are you angry about the traffic nightmare at Suffolk Retail Park? Write to Your Letters, The Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.