Photograph from Derby Climate Change Demo Photograph of protesters delivering petition against roadbuilding to the DfT Photograph of protesters campaigning against the Linsdale Bypass
Road Block is now a project of Campaign for Better Transport. Please visit www.bettertransport.org.uk for up-to-date information.


 

 

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Road Block is now a project of the Campaign for Better Transport. Visit the website for up-to-date details. For more information, contact:

 

Rebecca Lush Blum, Roads and Climate Campaigner

Campaign for Better Transport

E-mail: rebecca.lush[at]bettertransport.org.uk

Tel: 020 7613 7721/07854 693067

 

Rebecca will continue to send out the bi-monthly e-bulletin about anti-road campaigns around the country. Sign up on the Campaign for Better Transport website.

 

Road Block operated as an independent organisation from January 2005 to January 2007. An archive of the Road Block press releases, e-bulletins and news articles are still available from this site.


Inspector recommends the Thames Gateway Bridge scheme is scrapped!

On 26 July the Inspector for the Thames Gateway Bridge public inquiry rejected the scheme, but the government refused to accept this and ordered a fresh inquiry, presumably until they get the answer they want! The Inspector ruled that the scheme would increase carbon emissions and encourage traffic growth and this was against government policy.


M1 widening costs rise to over £5 billion!

According to the government's Nichols report, the M1 widening has risen from approved costs of £3.7 billion, to an estimated £5.1 billion. The minister has yet to approve the costs. The widening is just 120 miles, making this £43 million a mile! Transport 2000 pointed out that £5.1 billion is just over the national annual rail budget, whilst The Observer newspaper said that the £5.1bn project was bigger than the annual economies of a third of the world's nations! Whilst the government claims to want to tackle climate change it is spending more than £5bn to take us in the opposite direction.


Important changes to the planning system proposed

The government is proposing changes to the planning system that would make it easier for them to build new roads (and airports and nuclear power stations). A new campaign has been launched against the plans: Planning Disaster. Please sign the letter to Gordon Brown opposing the plans. See the press release.


Roadblock and Transport 2000 join forces

On 1 January 2007, Road Block became a project of Transport 2000, the national environmental transport body. Road Block will continue as a network of local groups, and its coordinator, Rebecca Lush, has become Transport 2000ís roads and climate campaigner. Read the press release.


Eddington study recommends more roadbuilding for next ten years
The Eddington study on transport has given the green light to the current road building programme but says a 2015 national road pricing might reduce the economic case for roadbuilding by some 80 per cent. Read Road Block's view on the Eddington study here.


Roadbuilding fuels climate change

Road Block has produced a postcard for you to send to the transport minister to tell him to end roadbuilding as it is fuelling traffic growth. Please download, print off, and post back to Road Block and we will send the cards onto the minister. Or post a stamped addressed envelope to us telling us how many you would like.


Ministerial statements on road building have been added to the site. See http://www.roadblock.org.uk/statements.htm


M6 Expressway defeated!

On 20 July the government announced that it was not going to press ahead with the deeply unpopular M6 Expressway - a new tolled 51-mile parallel motorway from Birmingham to Manchester. Congratulations to the brilliant GAME alliance of groups who are now getting ready to defeat the alternative £2.9 billion widening scheme proposed instead. For further information see the press release.


Victories! Roads dropped

In the 6 July regional funding announcements the government decided that a number of roads it had previously approved would not get funding in the next 10 years. Although they wouldn't do anything as sensible as withdraw approval for them, it is very unlikely they will go ahead.

The Brunel Link/Harnham Relief Road (aka Salisbury Bypass) has finally been defeated by brilliant community campaigning stretching over decades. The River Nadder and the stunning watermeadows are now safe. The A47 Acle Straight has been rejected by ministers due to strong campaigning about its impact on the biodiversity of the Broads National Park. Several roads in Cornwall have been dropped: St Austell to A30 Link road, Camelford Bypass (both of which had great community campaigns), A30 Carland Cross to Chiverton Cross, and A30 Temple to Higher Carblake Improvement. To see a list of 17 other dropped or rejected road schemes click here.


New research shows how roadbuilding fails

A new report published on 6 July by CPRE and the government's Countryside Agency examined the impacts of three big recently built road schemes, including the Newbury Bypass. The researchers found that traffic grew rapidly on both the new bypasses and the existing roads they replaced, with the new roads generating additional road traffic. Traffic forecasts for 2010 were being approached now, or had already been exceeded. It also shows how roadbuilding increased development pressures on undeveloped land nearby and caused significant damage to landscapes. Despite the research the government is still pressing on with a huge roads programme of over 200 approved schemes, and is planning to spend over £1 billion this year alone on futile and damaging roadbuilding.


Highways Agency road building budget doubles for 2006-7

In the recently published Highways Agency Business Plan it was revealed that their road building budget had been increased from £589 million in 2005-6 to £1046 million in 2006-7 - almost doubling. They have stolen the money from the Managing Traffic and Improving Technology budgets.


Take Action!! Object to the A628 Mottram-Tintwistle Bypass

 Letters are urgently needed to object to the A628 Mottram-Tintwistle bypass. This damaging scheme is being pushed through by the Highway's Agency, with a Public Inquiry expect to start in Autumn of this year. For more information, visit the Save Swallow's Wood website.


More roads get go-ahead in middle of climate crisis 29.03.06

 Whilst the government revealed that it was failing to meet its climate change targets on 28 March, for roads campaigners it wasn't hard to see the reasons why. During March 2006, the government gave the go-ahead to THREE massive new road schemes. The £175 million M6 Extension up to Scotland and the £65 million A419 Blunsdon Bypass all were given final approval. Meanwhile the day after the climate announcements, the £209 million traffic generating Mersey Crossing was given the green-light. The government is creating the traffic and CO2 increases it says it wants to stop.


Take Action!! Stop the Heysham M6 Link Road

 Letters are urgently needed to object to the Heysham M6 Link Road planning application. Visit the Heysham Link campaign's website for more information.


Roads costs go through roof - new data!
 Using roads costs estimates supplied by DfT in December 2005, Road Block has calculated that costs of Highways Agency trunk roads have increased by a huge 67% since they were first approved. Government funded local road schemes have risen at 45%. Download the latest data here.


Newbury Bypass failed in five years
 On the tenth anniversary of the start of the long protests against the Newbury Bypass, traffic figures show the road has generated 50% more traffic, and rush hour congestion is worse than before the road within five years of opening. The data was in a report for West Berkshire council by WS Atkins called Movement Framework for Newbury. See Road Block press release and Friends of the Earth press release. See also the Guardian story.


Roads costs rise as trams funding slashed
 As two tram schemes were pulled due to cost increases, research by Road Block showed that the cost of the trunk road programme was averaging a 53% cost increase, whilst local roads were leaping up by an average of 40%. See the Road Block press release for full details.


Two Road Protest Camps Set Up 10.11.05

 Two protest camps against roads have been set up. The newest (established November 2005) is near Edinburgh, at the wildlife rich Dalkeith Park and is against the Dalkeith Bypass. Tree sits have been set up to prevent trees with bat roosts from being felled over winter. See the Save Dalkeith Park website for more information. The other camp was set up by local residents on 23 September in Southend and is getting stronger all the time. This camp is protecting an internationally important Anglo Saxon king's burial mound. See the Save Priory Park website. Both camps need support.


Southend Road protesters Invade DfT - 16.08.05

 Local residents against the Priory Park road scheme in Southend invaded the Department for Transport on 16 August to call for the government not to award additional funding for the scheme. See the press release and the Guardian article.
 They locked themselves together in the front lobby of the DfT, but were later ejected by police, with no arrests. See the gallery for a photo of the action (attached) and film footage.


M6 Expressway, Stonehenge and Tyne Tunnel - 19-21.07.05

 As Parliament packed up, several major roads announcements were made. Further work was ordered on the 50 mile long M6 Expressway, despite the fact that 98% of the 9528 consultation respondents rejected the scheme, and that it will trash the Staffordshire/Cheshire countryside. The go-ahead was also given to the controversial Tyne tunnel - see http://www.tyne-crossings.org/ - even though the inquiry inspector said it would "substantially increase the number of journeys taken by private car". They also gave the go-ahead for a major new port near London, at Shell Haven, conditional that there is loads more widening of the M25.

 Good news however with Stonehenge, as the government backed down on building a huge tunnel under the World Heritage Site. Because of the damage, or that it would generate loads more traffic? No, because it would cost a whopping £470 million see http://www.savestonehenge.org.uk.


Parklife pull down the fences around Priory Park 11.07.05

 Local campaigners from the Parklife campaign have removed the fences that Southend Borough Council erected a year ago around a nationally significant Saxon king's burial site, at Priory Park. No arrests were made. The road threatens the burial site, 113 trees and 3000m2 of open space. Campaigners claim this is one of the most expensive stretches of local road, as costs for the 870 metre stretch of dual carriageway have more than tripled, to reach a staggering £11.2m. See http://savepriorypark.org. The government are set to make a decision about whether this road goes ahead at any moment.


Kingskerswell Bypass Planning Application halted 07.06.05

 The Kingskerswell Alliance, opposing the highly destructive Kingskerswell Bypass in Devon, have persuaded the Government Office South West (GOSW) to halt the planning application. The announcement came at the eleventh hour the day before the County Council were due to pass their application. The GOSW have issued an Article 14 direction that halts the application while they investigate further claims that the Environmental Statement is deficient. Congratulations to the Kingskerswell Alliance.


New London motorway will bring gridlock 23.05.05

 Top transport academic, Professor Phil Goodwin, after analysing the disputed Transport for London (TfL) figures for the Thames Gateway Bridge, has concluded there will massive traffic increases on numerous streets in east London, after construction. Some roads will see a quadrupling and trebling of traffic by 2016.

Full Story


Thames Gateway Bridge campaign win postponement of public Inquiry 20.05.05

 The fantastic joint campaign against the new London motorway (aka Thames Gateway Bridge) celebrated a significant victory as campaigners demands for a postponement of the inquiry have been granted.

Full Story


M74 campaign in Glasgow launch legal challenge of decision to go ahead with motorway 20.05.05

 Friends of the Earth Scotland and JAM74 have launched a legal challenge against the outrageous decision of the Scottish Executive to overturn the complete rejection by the Public Inquiry Inspector of the £500m M74 in east Glasgow. The Scottish Executive arrogantly didn't even give adequate reasons for their dismissal of his findings.

Full Story


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Archived E-Bulletins
27th June 2007
27th April 2007
28th February 2007
20th December 2006
30th November 2006
31st October 2006
31st August 2006
30th July 2006
26th June 2006
23rd May 2006
18th April 2006
12th March 2006
11th February 2006
15th January 2006
16th December 2005
27th November 2005
5th November 2005
13th October 2005
30th September 2005
16th September 2005
26th August 2005
12th August 2005
29th July 2005
16th July 2005
2nd July 2005
17th June 2005
2nd June 2005
20th May 2005
6th May 2005
22nd April 2005
8th April 2005
25th March 2005
11th March 2005
www.roadblock.org.uk - alliance against roadbuilding |