Unanimous support for by-pass

AN Evening Star campaign to make the accident-ridden A140 safer is today well on its way.Every single person at an around 50-strong meeting put their hand up in support of a by-pass at the Stonham villages.

AN Evening Star campaign to make the accident-ridden A140 safer is today well on its way.

Every single person at an around 50-strong meeting put their hand up in support of a by-pass at the Stonham villages.

People at the meeting, which was held at Stonham Baptist Community Centre, Stonham Parva, also decided to form the A140 Action Group.

The Star is calling for a bypass to start south of Creeting Bottoms and rejoin the A140 north of Stonham Parva.

More than 40 people have been killed on the road between its A14 and Scole junctions since 1990.

Latest victim was Norfolk bread van driver Gary Oakley, who died in a collision with a lorry at Creeting Bottoms on February 4.

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Tony Fowler, Mid Suffolk district councillor for The Stonhams and a member of the action group's working party, said: "People want something done. There have been about four accidents in the Stonhams stretch of the A140 in the last couple of months. The decision is to form an action group. Our long-term aim is to bring about a by-pass."

Trevor Hughes, 54, who lives on the A140 at Creeting Bottoms, suffered £80,000 to £100,000 of damage to his garden as a result of February's accident.

Welcoming the idea of a by-pass, he said: "The whole road needs to be a dual carriageway. It's so dangerous. Drivers just go too fast."

Phil Hogan, of Paines Hill, Stonham Parva, also welcomed the idea of a bypass.

She said: "On December 18 a car hit my house and it has taken the loss adjusters three months to find a builder to take on the work, because of the danger of working so near the road."

Linda Buttle does not think a by-pass would damage trade at the post office she runs on the A140 at Little Stonham.

She said: "The biggest culprit seems to be lorries and motorbikes. There are even regular people who we know speed every day."

The A140 Action Group will now be contacting organisations such as hauliers, the Port of Felixstowe, the AA and the RAC and will look into the cost of road signs or a speed camera.

Another meeting will be held in around six weeks' time - and Mr Fowler hopes representatives from the traffic police and Suffolk County Council will attend.

Tania Ling, vice-chairman of Stonham Parva Parish Council, said the council has not yet made any decisions as to whether to support future plans.

She said: "Safety certainly needs to be improved in some way but it depends, for a start, where the route of the by-pass would be.

"Plans we saw last year showed it coming in just after the Magpie pub. This would be pointless as it wouldn't by-pass all the homes. It would also cut the village in two.

"People have said to me they support the idea of a by-pass in principle, but the route is very much a key issue."

What's your view on safety on the A140 Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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