Switch Island – More accidents

www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/thornton-bypass-under-review-after-11563892

The Liverpool Echo has the story – see link above

I use Switch Island regularly and am always cautious about where the new road joins it as I have seen red light jumpers taking big risks flying across this busy junction. If I have noticed correctly it is traffic leaving the M57 travelling northwards onto the new road that is involved.

But of course there is a wider problem and I have spoken to drivers who say the road markings are not clear or that there is too much information to take in and it is confusing. Take confused, often non-local drivers, with regular commuters in a hurry (some willing to jump red lights) and the mixture is a dangerous one.

My feeling is that the problems can only really be solved with a fly-over so that some traffic is taken out of this hugely complex junction.

Finally, I would add that I have been made aware of drivers who avoid Switch Island these days because they feel it is not a safe place to be. I tend to avoid Switch Island in bad/wet weather due to the antics of speeding and red light jumping drivers.

Sefton – Switch Island to Thornton Link Road – Opening postponed again!

Having issued invitations to the opening ceremony Sefton Council has had to withdraw them as the latest planned opening date has been put back yet again.

All was looking good for 6th August but today news slipped out of the Council’s Bootle bunker to the effect that it had been put back to 19th August. Makes you wonder how good the communication channels are between the Council and the road builders does it not?

What’s more the 10 Parish Councils in the Borough who had all been invited to send along a representative to the opening ceremony have now been told to consider themselves uninvited as the Borough Council now only wants 1 representative of all the Parish Councils to attend.

I hear that there had been some ‘misunderstanding’ over the invitation to the Parish Councils but having seen an e-mail dated 20th July it was very clear that all 10 Parish Council were being asked to send a representative along. To quote it said ‘Each Parish Council have been sent an invitation and can nominate one person to attend to represent their particular Parish Council’. So why withdraw the invitations? Could it be that Sefton Council is trying once again to do down its Parish Councils? Whatever the reason it shines the Borough Council in a poor light.

Here's a shot of the original march through Thornton which got the road campaign up and running again. I know because I was on it with Thornton residents and their Parish Councillors.

Here’s a shot of the original march through Thornton which got the road campaign up and running again. I know because I was on it with Thornton residents and their Parish Councillors.

But hang on a minute who started the campaign around 2000 for the road to be built? Well blow me it was the residents and their Parish Council – Thornton to be precise! I do hope that Thornton PC has in fact been invited and that their representative gets to cut the ceremonial ribbon. Anything less will be another snub by a Borough Council which seems to have a very short memory!

Thornton Switch Island Link Road – The first bit is actually open

Well just a short length of it from near the Jospice/Long Lane junction in Southport Road, Thornton to the new traffic island on the extension of Quarry Road.

When I had a look last week both southbound and northbound traffic was using it.

The photo below reflects the the moody weather of the day:-

Link Road - Thornton end 19 05 2015

Click on the photo to enlarge it.

The photo looks south towards the new traffic island which meets the extended Quarry Road in Thornton.

Thornton – Switch Island Link Road

I have been tracking the progress of the building of this new road, on this blog site, for a while now having spent years campaigning for it with Thornton Parish residents in particular.

It was one of the highlights of my 30 years as a local councillor when the Coalition Government gave the project the green light but the real credit, as I have said before, goes to the people and Parish Council of Thornton who resurrected the previously killed off project. My contribution was to raise the issue within Sefton Council and then as Council Leader to take it to Regional political forms to gain support for the project. The rest as they say is history.

Here are a couple of shots of how things are changing around the junction of Long Lane and Southport Road in Thornton, where the new road will join the road through Ince Woods:-

Long Lane junction with Southport Rd, Thornton 22 10 14

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Click on the photos to enlarge them.

Switch Island – Thornton Link Road moves on apace

Progress on Broomscross Road, as it is to be called, is really moving on apace probably because of the excellent summer weather we have had.

It is to be called Broomscross Road after an historic cross that stood just to the east of Thornton where those carrying coffins to Sefton Church would rest on their sad journeys in times past. The new road passes close to the site of the cross.

I decided to have a look at progress of the road from a rarely seen location – Chapel Lane in Netherton (part of the Trans-Pennine Trail). This is a short dead-end (for vehicles) lane that serves just a few properties/farms off the Northern Perimeter Road. But there is an historic building here – have a look at this link for details:-

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Benet%27s_Chapel,_Netherton

This was the scene looking north and south a few days ago:-

From Chapel Lane looking south towards Switch Island.

From Chapel Lane looking south towards Switch Island.

From Chapel Lane looking north towards Thornton. You can just see the spire of Sefton Church on the right horizon.

From Chapel Lane looking north towards Thornton. You can just see the spire of Sefton Church on the mid-right horizon.

I can’t help but be pleased to see this progress after years of campaigning with the likes of Thornton Parish Council (who don’t get the credit they deserve in my book) to get this vital Link Road built.

The second photo is amongst my Flickr shots at:-
www.flickr.com/photos/86659476@N07/

Broomscross Road or Switch Island – Thornton Link Road

Going back to the early planning stages of this Link Road, which is presently being built, I made a plea for the historic Brickwall Lane wall to be sensitively taken down and properly rebuilt.

A small matter you may say but that wall is a part of the heritage of historic Sefton Village and its a wall I have had to badger Sefton Council to maintain in the past.

But my pleas, which I worried had not been heard, have been acted upon and the wall is being rebuilt at an angle where the new road will have a junction with Brickwall Lane. As you can guess the Lane was named after the rather unique wall with its triangular stone cappings. This is a rebuilt part of the wall and its looking great:-

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This next shot shows how the wall is being angled to form a feature on the southern side of the junction that is yet to be constructed:-

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It seems a long time ago that, in my then capacity as Leader of Sefton Council, I met the Roads Minister Mike Penning (at Switch Island) after he had announced that the Coalition was going to put up the Government’s share of the money to build the road following years of the previous Labour Government not stumping up the cash. In fact it was less than 4 years ago. Here’s a photo taken at the time:-

27th October 2010 - having just agreed the deal to build the Link Road with Coalition Roads Minister Mike Penning MP.

27th October 2010 – having just agreed the deal to build the Link Road with Coalition Roads Minister Mike Penning MP.