ERYC officers have apparently cast doubt on whether funding will be available for Preston’s traffic review. The necessary – and many residents believed, “promised” – strategic review of the impacts of traffic through Preston had been taken for granted. The need for the East Riding of Yorkshire Council (ERYC) to sit down with local ward councillors and the local plan and do an “emergency traffic review” on Preston’s traffic issues, had, it was thought, been accepted. But now it appears that council officers are indicating that this should never have been promised and the costs of such a review may prohibit its implementation.

Beverley & Holderness MP Graham Stuart recently took part in a site visit to Preston Crossroads to see the traffic situation for himself. A subsequent meeting chaired by the MP of Preston traffic campaigners, local Ward councillors and key officers from the East Riding, took place the same day. Feedback from that meeting was given at last night’s Preston Parish Council meeting. The parish council Chair, Councillor Ian Ireland, reported back on an ERYC officer’s comments that a comprehensive traffic review would cost in the region of £500,000 to undertake. And there are doubts whether funding for such a review can be raised by ERYC. Councillor Ireland reported back that the MP had issued a challenge to the ERYC to find the money. Furthermore, if there was demonstrable support in the village for such a review, then as MP, he would give his best support.

Preston traffic review photo
Street meeting in Preston to discuss traffic issues on 2 July 2021. Cllr. Ian Ireland (left) and Graham Stuart MP.

Feasibility study instead?

Rather than see the half a million pounds as an insurmountable problem, Cllr. Ireland suggested a phased approach was needed. The first step, was to seek a feasibility study that could determine the terms of reference of a comprehensive review; what would the review involve, what would be its scope, with what kind of outcomes considered, and importantly what baseline information on existing traffic issues would be collected? Such a feasibility study would be considerably less expensive, argued Cllr. Ireland, but provide essential information for the next phase.

The idea of a Preston traffic review has been descriptively labelled as ‘strategic’, ‘comprehensive and in February this year by the Chair of ERYC’s Planning Committee as an ’emergency’ review. It was considered by those following this debate as something that would certainly take place. There will be understandable disappointment in the village that the ERYC is seemingly backtracking now on the idea.

Traffic campaigners in Preston were left bemused in February by the decision to approve the building of the Lelley Fields crematorium, without first sorting out the village’s traffic issues. One responded to the idea of an urgent traffic review with the quip: “But when? Knowing the council, we could all be clients of the new crematorium before that happens!”

However, rather than giving way to cynicism, Cllr. Ireland says the village campaign needs to raise its profile and a new “collective effort” from residents needs to made to highlight the problems and the need for solutions.

(Ongoing story)

2 thoughts on “ERYC Preston traffic review… doubts over its funding.

  1. East Riding have authorised two large industrial estates and a new crematorium in the last year, all of which will have make the traffic situation incomparably worse than it already is..
    I have been calling for a proper long term plan to build a bypass for Hedon and Preston before the current problems become insufferable. Hedon Town Council and other parishes in the area have supported these calls.
    The local Tories response was to promise a Strategic Review of Preston’s problem by ERYC (which wouldn’t address the wider problem anyway). But now they are not even going to deliver that. How much worse does the situation have to get before the traffic problems are addressed ?

  2. From Cllr John Dennis, Ward Member S W Holderness.

    Thanks for this item Ray and explaining the Traffic Review decision. It came as quite a blow and we Ward Members are still taking it on board. I trust that the follow-up action has some success.

    Since the meetings last week, I have sent a request for a pollution control monitor to be installed near the village traffic lights if that is possible. There is one near the fire station but that is there to monitor the air quality of the village as a whole with the Saltend Chemicals Park being so close. This one would be in the village centre where the problem is greater and permanent. An ideal spot would be just in School Rd.

    It is the case that many of Preston’s residents actually live in those cottages in Main St and particularly School Rd. Most are within a few feet of the roadway, where, all day, every day, they are subjected to diesel and petrol fumes from the many HGV’s, buses and general traffic while it stands with engines idling until the lights go through their four phases. Even more pollution is created when they rev up to drive off !

    All these fumes are emitted only a few feet from their windows and front doors.
    Most properties along there don’t even have front gardens to give a little protection to the residents and their children.

    I’ll report the response of the Environment Officer when it comes back.

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