- Please sign our petition calling on Stockport Council to remove the A555/A6-M60 Bypass (Hazel Grove to Bredbury) from its SEMMMS Refresh plan and lift the threat to the Lower Goyt Valley and our other precious green spaces. Read our SEMMMS Refresh summary.
- The huge £477 million costing of the A555/A6-M60 Bypass was bungled. It should be much MORE, using SEMMMS’ own method of calculation.
- SEMMMS’ Airport Road has opened a year late, with mixed effects on local roads.
- Two roads due to receive extra traffic from the Airport Road are already on a list of 20 Stockport streets with illegal levels of pollution. A pollution charge may be levied on some vehicles.
- The Council says reapplying for funding for the A555/A6-M60 Bypass is a “waiting game” after the Government turned them down last February.
Stockport Council’s new attempt to promote its proposed A555/A6-M60 Bypass is behind schedule. The final version of the Council’s SEMMMS Refresh transport strategy document was due to go before councillors this autumn, but is likely to now appear early next year.
Apparently the autumn date failed to take into account that the Refresh needed to respond to the transport implications of Greater Manchester’s delayed Spatial Framework redraft, which will say where new housing should be built. Oops!
The SEMMMS’ costing for the A555/A6-M60 Bypass is falling apart (see News item) following the recent completion of the A6 Airport Road (Hazel Grove to M56) at a higher price than expected. SEMMMS’ calculation of the A555/A6-M60 cost relied heavily on a low estimate for the Airport Road.
The Council’s transport officers published a previous SEMMMS Refresh draft in May this year. A consultation on the strategy closed on July 16th. Whenever the final draft appears, it will continue to be a threat to our valleys, woods and fields. If the Council adopts the strategy, including support for the A555/A6-M60 Bypass, it will become part of Greater Manchester’s transport plans.
The Bypass would destroy four and a half miles of beautiful woods, valleys and fields. It would link the new Airport Road A555 at Hazel Grove with the M60 at Bredbury at a final cost of half a BILLION pounds (sorry, make that £600 million). New roads generate extra traffic, so the Bypass would create traffic problems rather than solve them. Five junctions on the Bypass and two link roads would create a knot of congestion on or around Offerton (see map).
In May we discovered that the Council had hidden away a letter that it received from the Government’s Department for Transport in February rejecting its request for an immediate £500,000 for further Bypass preparations.
The DfT’s letter expressed unhappiness about the overall expense of the Bypass and the way Stockport Council officers went about asking for funding for it last January (- read the DfT’s letter and our commentary). But the letter provided a grain of hope for the Council’s leaders and officers by suggesting that they should try to get Andy Burnham to make the Bypass a priority for Government funding for Greater Manchester. SEMMMS Refresh is the Council’s way of doing that.
Goyt Valley SOS! will be lobbying councillors to persuade them to reject the road-building proposals in SEMMMS Refresh.
As well as the A555/A6-M60 Bypass, SEMMMS Refresh proposes a High Lane/Disley Bypass (see NEWS) and, in the future, widening some parts of the A6-Airport Road, which is barely finished! SEMMMS Refresh also includes widening of the A555/A34 roundabout. SEMMMS Refresh is a 20-year programme so even if the Government continues to withhold funding in the next few years, our Goyt Valley and green space would continue to have a threat hanging over them.
The full Council voted at the end of last year to seek funding for the next stage of Bypass preparations despite a magnificent petition of 7,061 signatures opposing the Bypass. How can councillors sensibly maintain their support for further Bypass work when the Government has scorned the Council’s funding application?
Continuing to put the Bypass at the centre of SEMMMS Refresh makes the Council’s strategy a lop-sided, unrealistic promotion of outdated 1970s road-building-addicted transport.
SEMMMS is short for “South East Manchester Multi Modal Study/Strategy”.
We have a postcard (above) to send to councillors. It’s available at the Vintage Emporium Cafe at Pear Mill 10am-3pm every day except Wednesdays. View Councillor Sheila Bailey speaking passionately against the Bypass at the Stockport Cabinet meeting on 14th November 2017. See what the Bypass would do to Stockport’s Goyt Valley at https://goo.gl/EnCunu. Read the latest developments on our NEWS PAGE. Visit our facebook pages: www.facebook.com/GoytValleySOS and Goyt and Poise Valleys SOS. To get more involved, contact us . The first draft of the Council’s SEMMMS Refresh strategy document is here; we have a summary and critique.
The main contents of this website are:
- The A6-M60 Bypass would devastate the wonderful Lower Goyt Valley – which should be one of Stockport’s treasures. The valley brings countryside to within a mile of the town centre. Lower Bredbury and ancient Crookilley Woods would also suffer. Explore the route from Bredbury (new article);
- Another beautiful valley would be severely damaged. It’s a nature reserve and a site of unique geology: Magic in the woods at Poise Brook;
- The Offerton estate, Bosden Farm and the top of Hazel Grove would lose their shield against urban noise and pollution: Precious green spaces from Foggbrook to Torkington;
- Fields and woods including four sites of biological importance would be at risk as the Bypass approaches the A6: Losing fine countryside in Torkington (new article);
- Schools and major roads should not go together, but they would do with the Bypass: Seven schools next to the route;
- The Bypass will not solve Stockport’s traffic problems. It is a plan for trying to deal with the problems of too much car dependency by creating even more: The Bypass won’t work!
- The Bypass’s unbuilt predecessor, the A6(M), is responsible for dangerous Tragicomic Junction 25 (article rewritten and re-illustrated).
- Stockport Council has just completed one major road scheme. It was a year behind schedule and is likely to break air pollution laws: Bumpy Airport Road (new article);
- Poison air is the biggest killer on the roads. The Bypass would make it worse (new article);
- We have news of what’s happening; and not-so-new news.
- The latest Bypass plans are from 2006 – but only published last year: We have added notes to copies of the plans. The source is the Council’s 2006 plans pages 1-9 of Appendix 1 of the Strategic Business Case (which can be magnified for detail).
- We have a examined the first draft of SEMMMS Refresh and its road-building plans: Same old SEMMMS.
- The Business Case published last year outrageously spun, selected and distorted information to foist an expensive and destructive road on us: see our review of the information appendices and our (lengthy) comments on the main document.
Architect James Dyson has modelled the northern part of the A6-M60 route to show that the land bulldozed would be greater than the official plan shows. The illustration above is his view of the junction next to Dial Park School. The yellow areas show cuttings and earthworks according to the plan; the dark green areas are further areas of land that will need to be taken. See all of James’ model.
Main sources used on this website:
- Full environmental report 2003: SEMMMS Major Road Schemes Stage 2 Environmental Assessment (available from Stockport MBC)
- The route, including both M60 to A6 and A6 to M56: South East Manchester Multi Modal Strategy, Annex E, Appraisal of SEMMMS New Relief Road July 2004 (available from Stockport MBC)
- A6 to Manchester Airport Relief Road Transport Assessment Main Text October 2013 http://a6marr.stockport.gov.uk/746597/760095/760276
- Stockport MBC’s strategy: “SEMMMS new relief road scheme – results and conclusions of initial assessment” October 31, 2003 (can be found by search engines)
- Department for Transport’s Note DFTQ9 – Forecast Usage of the Proposed SEMMMS Relief Road (Freedom of Information request) 2004
- SMBC’s Stage 1 Feasibility Study A6-M60 Relief Road
- SMBC’s Strategic Outline Busines Case for the A6-M60 Relief Road.
Contact our website group to tell us what you think, or to ask to be kept informed or to become more involved.
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