Richard chaired a meeting in Parliament to update interested parties on progress in getting improvements to the A34. Attending were six MPs from Hampshire, Berkshire and Oxfordshire. Also in attendance were representatives from West Berkshire Council, Oxfordshire County Council, Harwell and Milton business parks and Local Enterprise Partnerships.
This was a chance to study the report Highways England had commissioned on the safety of the A34 from its junction with the M3 to its junction with the M40.
This shows that while on the face of it the road is not greatly more dangerous than others there are parts of it which have a very poor safety record, the worst of which is in West Berkshire near to the village of East Ilsley. Highways England also concede that the impact of even minor incidents has become a massive economic issue given the importance of this road for the economy of much of the South of England, the Midlands and the North.
“I was pleased that Highways England have carried out this work and that they will report back to MPs in June about which options for improvements they will take forward. The MPs present also decided that following the election, those returned to Parliament would seek an early meeting with Lord Adonis, the Chair of the National Infrastructure Commission. This would, with the assistance of LEPs from the length of the A34, make the economic case for an early adoption of the Oxford to Cambridge Expressway. This road is the long term solution to the A34’s problems.”