DCSIMG

‘Horrifying’ road closure put back in Lights U-turn

Yeadon Way, one of Blackpool's main arterial roads, will be closed for up to six months from November for extensive repairs and improvements.

Yeadon Way, one of Blackpool's main arterial roads, will be closed for up to six months from November for extensive repairs and improvements.

A £3.6m project to repair Yeadon Way will now be carried out after the Illuminations.

The U-turn follows a consultation held after initial plans, to start the work in October, sparked outcry across Blackpool as it clashed with the Lights.

The vital work on one of the mains route into the town centre will now start on November 10, and is expected to last into April.

Coun John Jones, cabinet member for highways, said: “There is no doubt that closing Yeadon Way will impact on the other routes around Blackpool. However it is such an important piece of work which does need to be carried out.

“I have met representatives from Stay Blackpool and Blackpool BID and I know how strongly they feel about timing this work so it doesn’t coincide with the Illuminations.

“As a result we have asked contractors for a schedule that ensures the work is carried out in the shortest time possible. I am now confident that we can start in November and hopefully still be finished in time for the start of the Easter holidays.”

Coun Jones said if the work, which is being funded by the Department for Transport, was not carried out, it could risk the road being permanently closed. As well as structural repairs, the work will also involve improving the drainage in the surrounding area.

Claire Smith, president of Stay Blackpool, said: “The illuminations are no longer the icing on the cake – they are absolutely critical for the businesses in this town.

“To bring in a diversion at the end of the Lights is a horrifying thought.”

Mrs Smith said she was pleased Coun Jones had agreed to the consultation, which had resulted in the delay to the start of the works.

“Together we have come up with this really workable compromise,” she added.
“We know the work has to be done, and unfortunately it’s still going to be over Christmas, but the fact that we get the last month of the Lights is a good compromise.”

Eileen Ormond, Blackpool’s Town Centre Manager and BID Manager, said: “We very much welcome the agreement to delay the closing of this important route into Blackpool under after the crucial trading period of October half term and the conclusion of this year’s Illuminations.

“Plans are in place to provide clear signage on alternative routes to ensure that the traffic coming into Blackpool while Yeadon Way is closed can reach its destination without any confusion.”

 

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