A Letter from Nantwich update
July 2009 (Comments
and events relevant at the time of this update)
New signs mean extra traffic for our roads
This is the junction of Station Road, the Waterlode
and Pillory Street. Many people say the stretch of road running straight
ahead to the railway (note the footbridge) is Wellington Road, but I
have always thought of it as Pillory Street up to the level crossing -
and St Anne's R.C. Church, far right. Until the Waterlode was added
some years back there was no road to the right of the picture.
GEORGINA Ross, one of the people campaigning
against the new signage on behalf of Wellington Road and Audlem
Road residents, has sent me the following:
part of the re-signing and reclassifying process - which cost around
£300,000 - Wellington Road was changed (as was London Road and
Millstone Lane) from an A road to a B road.
We were, therefore, hoping the road might benefit slightly from the re-signage, especially as it is residential, has three schools along
it (including Weaver Primary), has narrow pavements and is used by
many pedestrians and cyclists.
Unfortunately, we have seen a marked increase in traffic on what was
already a busy road. There are more HGVs and the traffic starts
earlier and finishes later than it did before.
The problems are twofold:
Wellington Road used to take
incoming town traffic from the Whitchurch and Audlem roads.
Now it is additionally taking it from the east side of town
- from the A500 / M6 and A51 (from Stone). Traffic from these
two routes is now redirected via Peter De Stapleigh Way onto
Wellington Road. The Newcastle-London Road (B road / east
artery into the town) is not now signposted
to the town centre. In fact, it has no traffic directed
along it all.
[The] Highways [department] said the decision to redirect from
London Road was made at the last minute and in consultation with
the Nantwich Transport Group. One reason given was that the main
car parks are on the west side of town (Snow
Hill, etc) and they wanted to avoid using Hospital
Street and Beam Street (due to previous accidents, etc). In their
opinion, this new traffic will not be
significant as it will only involve people who are new to the
Beam Street is favourably affected by the rerouting and yet it
is less residential, has several shops and is a much wider road.
Wellington Road is 100% residential with three schools. If there
have been more accidents in Beam Street perhaps there are other
issues that need to be addressed - such as the position of
All outgoing traffic seems to
now be directed down Wellington Road from the east and the
west sides, including several signs to Wrexham and Chester.
The sign (right) at the Station Road / Pillory
Street junction used to read
Whitchurch and Audlem. It now reads: M6,
Wrexham, Stoke-on-Trent, Crewe, and Whitchurch.
I don't know what's happened to Audlem though,
ironically, it's the only destination that Wellington Road
directly leads to.
According to Highways, the Stoke / Crewe / M6 traffic route is to
take the burden off Hospital Street, which is now an Air
Quality Management zone.
The signs for Chester / Wrexham - which sends traffic on
a long trip round the bypass - are due to the
apparently "low bridge", the aqueduct in
Welsh Row. It is, in fact,
the highest low bridge around at 15ft 6ins. Most
lorries are 13ft and 14ft tall. It has never been signed
as a low bridge before - nor did this stop the Waterlode
link road from being built out to it.
We've since heard from Highways that these signs
will be changed to say "Chester / Wrexham, avoiding low
We are unhappy with the obvious lack of consideration for
our residents and the apparent confusion / difference of
opinion as to the powers and influence of the groups
involved in the decision-making process.
Of course, we live on a main road and don't expect a totally
quiet life. What we are unhappy about is the inequitable
distribution of traffic - we wouldn't expect our incoming
traffic from Whitchurch and Audlem to be sent round to
London Road - and the seeming priorities given to other
roads. Also, the apparent disregard for schools and
schoolchildren in the town. As residents, we were neither
consulted nor represented. Highways calls this merely an
I would argue differently.
Making roads safer
meant problems for other residents
RACHEL SHENTON, who is also campaigning to
stop traffic being diverted along Wellington Road, e-mailed me with the following:
I THINK that the problems started when
Nantwich Traffic Action team was formed. This joined the forces of
Hospital Street residents with Welsh Row residents associations.
The aim of the highways (department) was to make both of these
streets safer, less used and generally better for the residents,
which is obviously a great idea for all of those people concerned.
The knock-on effect
for the residents of our road is that we
are either completely overlooked or worse, who knows!
Wellington Road is now the gateway into and out of town. Nobody
can tell me why we are now getting lorries from the motorway that
want to deliver at Sainsbury's (for example), or why we get petrol
tankers for the same destination. All I can think is that these
lorry drivers don't know the way and are just following the very
If the road signs do not change soon, some of the residents will
be parking legally on our street, and I am in no doubt that the
knock-on effect will be felt right
around town. So that will be
points she made were: "At the moment, traffic to and from the A500
is being directed down Wellington Road. This is just one thing we
want to change. When Peter De Stapleigh Way was built it was
supposed to direct all through traffic away from the town centre.
"As the signage is at present, no Crewe traffic is being signposted
along Crewe Road, no traffic is being signposted down Millstone
Lane, Beam Street, Newcastle Road (part), Hospital Street, or parts
of the by-pass."
it made a mistake
Speed limit urged
OTHERS are concerned about
the confusing road signs. Elizabeth Thompson e-mailed me to say:
"Perplexed by the road signage in Nantwich, I gave the highways
authority a call and they explained to me that it is a mistake that
they are sending people left down Wellington Road to Chester and
"It will be remedied to
send people straight on to The Waterlode, but this will still have a
height restriction thanks to the aqueduct (at the top of Welsh Row). So the
will continue to send people left to the bypass as an alternative
"It did make sense to get
people onto the bypass where possible but I couldn't understand why
they were sending all Chester and Wrexham traffic in the wrong
direction when there was a new bypass road (The Waterlode) perfect for keeping
traffic off Welsh Row. I hope they remedy the
See this Letter
for that Elizabeth. (She told me that she spoke to a very helpful
man in the highways department).
PARENTS in Wellington Road have taken their
fight one stage further by demanding that a 20mph speed limit is imposed
in the road in the region of St Anne's Catholic Primary School. Georgina Ross (Chairman) and
Rachel Shenton of Wellington Road Residents' Association are featured on
the front page of the Nantwich Chronicle (September 2, 2009) calling for the
new limit. They are supported by Gerry Smith, Chairman of the Governors, and Cllr Arthur Moran. Their call
comes in the form of a petition sent to Cheshire East Council.