Thursday, 17 June 2010

Morecambe's future transport links

Last week we found out that the government's spending review meant that all major road-building schemes needed to be reviewed. Whitehall was no longer giving any assurances that the £140 funding for the Morecambe link road was available and the public enquiry that should have been held in autumn has been postponed.

According to Radio Lancashire yesterday, the number one transport problem is the Heysham link road. It looks like it is being cancelled after many years of preparation. I am not sure how effective the protestors have been but I guess it was cancelled purely because of the economic climate. Radio Lancashire told us that some say the road is vital for the local economy (include me in that) and others say it is simply unaffordable. I have heard arguments on environmental grounds, on the grounds that it would disrupt local residents, and that it would not solve the traffic problem but it was the number one Lancashire project so money was coming in this direction.

The local Green Party reckon that we don't need the link road. They only see a need for good transport infrastructure because of the Port of Heysham. Even if there was no other industry in need of a better link, the Green Party must foresee no future expansion for the port. For me it is quite easy to see what will happen. Whatever industry is based in the area will eventually get fed up with paying the extra costs of getting to the motorway. Would you stay in the area if you could significantly lower your costs by moving to another site? Industry would either move or close.

The Green Party think that the economic argument does not "stack up" or the road would have been built. I'm afraid this is an extremely naive point of view. Roads are not built because they are somehow economically viable. They are built because they are needed. What will happen is that Morecambe will go into decline but the Green Party doesn't have to worry about that as they don't have any councillors here. They think that a "priority" bus service will help solve our problems. Fortunately we have a good bus service now and it gets you quickly from A to B. Unfortunately the economic arguments for leaving your car at home and taking the bus do not "stack up" and even a free bus service does nothing for any business that needs a transport solution.

Change the world


  1. Roads roads roads. Is that all you can think about?

    Heysham needs an all-day passenger rail service - much cheaper than your road building, & much more use for freight. Do you know that Morecambe & Heysham had the most intensive pioneering electric rail service in the world?

    Incidentally, I think the Green Party are totally useless.

  2. Thanks for your comment anonymous. You must be a regular reader as there is nothing else on roads on this page, so thanks also for your regular interest.

  3. P.S. I was reacting to the article on the radio and I could have written a lot more as a response. There are so many other things that could be done including an improvement of the rail links but I thought this blog entry was long enough.