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Trimley residents fear being cut off during rail works at level crossings

PUBLISHED: 05:30 01 May 2019

The Thorpe Lane crossing at Trimley St Martin   Picture: GOOGLE MAPS

The Thorpe Lane crossing at Trimley St Martin Picture: GOOGLE MAPS

Archant

People living near the Felixstowe rail line at Trimley say their lives have been affected by the work currently under way to upgrade the route.

At Trimley, people living on the other side of two level crossings fear their homes may be unreachable because they would have to drive across a field to get from one road to the other.

The Morston Hall level crossing is due to be closed between May 4 and May 28. The Thorpe Lane crossing is due to be shut from May 28 to June 17.

While they are closures, traffic is expected to use a farm track between the two lanes – and will be escorted across by Network Rail staff.

However Chris Young who lives in Grimston Lane and uses the crossings regularly said the farm track would be unsuitable for normal road vehicles.

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He said: “Day-to-day activities such as going to work, appointments, shopping and school runs are particularly effected but there will also considerable interference with things such deliveries, the post and waste collection. I dread to think of the problems that might arise with access for the emergency services.

“Despite approaches from several residents, Network Rail have failed to respond to the concerns raised. The stock answer given is that the local team will be in touch but as yet the silence is most certainly not golden.”

He said residents who had contacted Network Rail felt they ended up going around in circles when trying to find out what was happening.

A spokesman for Network Rail said: “We are aware of concerns being raised by residents about the temporary access road between Morston Hall and Thorpe Lane.

“We have written to residents to explain the works that need to be undertaken to improve the safety of the level crossings in advance of the increase in freight traffic using the branch line. We have worked closely with the highways authority to ensure that an alternative access route can be provided to those residents affected by the closures.

“As it is a single, compacted gravel track, the temporary access road will be managed by a team of traffic marshals and residents will be escorted along the road at 10mph. Residents who have contacted us with questions will receive a response before the start of the works on May 4.”

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