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Closure would hit villagers’ ‘only reasonable’ road route to Cambridge

Road sign on a street showing a road closure
Road sign on a street showing a road closure

The “temporary closure” of a South Cambridgeshire road is causing grave concerns for residents of one village who say they will have no reasonable route to get into Cambridge.

The airfield road in Longstanton is, for many villagers, a key route to get to the city while the A14 upgrade is ongoing – and it’s set to take three more years.

An application by Northstowe developers Sisk’s, which seeks to close the road for 19 months from May, means villagers will have little hope for congestion-free travel to the city.

It also means the required public consultation for such a move has been bypassed.

District councillor Alex Riley said: “The main road to Northstowe is to cross it, so it was always meant to be closed eventually. But to me it seems they are shutting it prematurely, and well before they said they were going to, which was once the A14 upgrade is complete.

“It’s used a lot as a rat run at the moment. Some people along the road are annoyed that it gets used, but for others in the village it’s the only reasonable way to get into Cambridge.

“Certainly it’s also a very popular cycle route.

“I think they are trying to bypass the public consultation.”

A Cambridgeshire County Council spokesperson said: “The road has restricted access and can only be used by buses, taxis, mopeds and invalid carriages, including mobility scooters.

“Residents should not be driving on the road in private cars and could face a fixed penalty notice from the police if caught.

“As it’s a Temporary Traffic Road Order the county council is not required to hold a consultation. The closure was agreed as part of the planning permissions granted for the development of Northstowe by South Cambridgeshire District Council.”

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