Daniel Zeichner, Member of Parliament for Cambridge, has called the response from Cambridgeshire County Council “the first signs of relief for local residents“, after it was stated that additional provisions had been considered in a meeting earlier this week to minimise the disruption being caused by A14 diversions for Cambridge residents. A communication from a Council officer stated that considerations discussed included: additional and more effective signage, the use of the overhead gantry Vehicle Messaging Signs on the A1 & A14, width restrictions to roads as well as the closing of Huntingdon Road.
Mr Zeichner said: “Although this communication does not yet guarantee action from Highways England and the Council, I think that this is the first sign of some relief for local residents. There is an acknowledgement that a problem exists, and it is a serious problem, and they have stated that they are considering possible solutions to rectify the problem.”
“Many of the cases I have received from constituents have been very concerning, particularly that of Mr Gristwood and the health implications he has suffered because of the fumes from the HGVs. That is why I wrote to the Chief of Executive of Highways England to get some answers for local residents.”
In recent weeks, dozens of residents have sent complaints to Mr Zeichner regarding the increase of Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) hurtling down a number of roads in Cambridge during the night as a result of road closures on the A14. This has caused severe disruption to many residents across the city, with people complaining of lack of sleep due to the noise, damaged roads and health implications.
Earlier in the month, Mr Zeichner wrote to Jim O’Sullivan, Chief Executive of Highways England, to seek clarification on the diversion policy in place for the ongoing work being carried out on the A14. In the letter, the Cambridge MP referred to the troubling case of Mrs & Mr Gristwood who raised health implications as a result of the high levels of fumes being emitted from the HGVs. Next week, Mr Zeichner will meet with Mrs Gristwood and receive a petition she has collected of local residents calling for action on the diversion disruption.
Mr Zeichner went onto say: “The response today is the first step. This must be translated into concrete action. If not, we will continue to stand up for local residents to ensure that they won’t be disturbed throughout the night by lorry loads hurtling down local roads.”
Mrs Elaine Gristwood, who has started a local petition, said: “This is the first step in getting something sorted and hopefully get the HGVs away from the local streets so everyone will be able to have an undisturbed nights sleep and less pollution. It is much appreciated that Daniel Zeichner MP has taken up our cause and supported this.”