Frustration at plan to close key link route

Division Lane in Marton
Division Lane in Marton
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A Fylde councillor today told of his “huge disappointment” at plans to close a key link road between Blackpool and south Fylde.

Lancashire County Council confirmed yesterday it would block a section of Division Lane, which links Wild Lane – known locally as the Moss Road – with Midgeland Road in Marton, because of safety concerns over the single-track road.

It means motorists will be left with just two routes open between St Annes and Blackpool – Queensway and Clifton Drive North.

County Coun Paul Hayhurst, who has pushed for the route to be opened one way, said the move was forced after residents in Midgeland Road raised concerns about speeding and inconsiderate driving on its narrow lane.

Coun Paul Hayhurst: “I am hugely disappointed about having to close it.

“I am for a one-way system and I know many are trying to look at doing work on Division Lane, possibly about getting the road opened one way. Lancashire County Council has had to bow to Blackpool. I have got 8,000 people who want to get to the motorway as quickly as possible.

“Everyone is desperate to get this sorted out.”

The northernmost section of Moss Road was closed off in August last year due to the state of the road, with a repair bill set at £350,000.

Commuters could drive on to Division Lane, on to Midgeland Road, before completing the diversion on School Road.

But with the increase in traffic, transport chiefs at Lancashire County Council said it has taken its toll on the state of the road. Now they are to apply for a temporary closure to fix it – but refused to say when the work will start.

Last week, The Gazette reported the Government had pledged to bankroll a long-awaited new link road on the site of the Moss Road, but could be years before any schedule for work is decided.

Sim Lane-Dixon, public realm manager for Fylde at County Hall, said: “We have agreed to the temporary closure of Division Lane between Wild Lane and Midgeland Road for safety reasons, as the condition of the road makes it unsafe for the volume of vehicles.

“We now need to go through the legal process for a temporary road closure, which will take a number of weeks.

“We will undertake repairs to bring the road back into use as soon as possible.

“Division Lane was never part of the preferred diversion route for the closure of Wild Lane. Drivers who have been using Division Lane as a rat run will still be able to use the diversion route, which was chosen for public safety as well as traffic reasons.”