A27 campaigners take fight to Westminster

Chichester A27 bypass from the Stockbridge footbridge
Chichester A27 bypass from the Stockbridge footbridge

THE A27 Action campaign was taken to Westminster when leading campaigners met with the transport minister.

West Sussex County Council’s Leader Louise Goldsmith, Arundel and South Downs MP Nick Herbert, East Worthing and Shoreham MP Tim Loughton and Worthing West MP Peter Bottomley all made the case for improvements to the A27 when they met with Patrick McCloughlin on Tuesday evening.

The meeting comes just weeks before an official announcement is expected from government about what roads will receive funding for improvements, with five other projects also bidding.

Prime minister David Cameron gave his largest hint to date that the A27 would be part of a £15 bn package of road improvements earlier this month.

Written material accompanying his speech to the Confederation of British Industry’s annual conference mentioned the A27 would be included as part of a nationwide initiative.

Among the changes to the Chichester bypass include improvements to six roundabouts where rush-hour congestion remains a long-standing issue.

West Sussex County Council has spearheaded a campaign for improvements to the congested trunk road with support from local MPs, businesses and district and borough councils.

Mrs Goldsmith said “It was a good meeting with the minister. We’re coming ever closer to the time when the government will make its decision and we will continue to make our case for the A27 to be on that list right up until that announcement.

“Our A27 Action Campaign has brought together so many people, MPs, local county, district, town and parish councillors as well as businesses, small and large, and residents.

“It has been terrific to have such support from so many sectors of our community.”

The announcement from government is expected in early December.