MP and A47 Alliance to fight plans to remove street lighting from busy Fenland stretch

STREET lighting is set to be removed from part of the A47 in Fenland after a Highways Agency review ruled there are insufficient accidents to support the renewal . The A47 Alliance and an MP have vowed to fight plans to remove the lights between Tilney A

Story by: TOM JACKSON

STREET lighting is set to be removed from part of the A47 in Fenland after a Highways Agency review ruled there are "insufficient accidents to support the renewal".

The A47 Alliance and an MP have vowed to fight plans to remove the lights between Tilney All Saints and King's Lynn, a road used by thousands of Fenland motorists every day.

The 40-year-old lights are reaching the end of their serviceable life, but the assessment found that the number of accidents during darkness along the stretch was "considerably less than would be expected for a location with street lighting".


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North West Norfolk MP Henry Bellingham has thrown his weight behind the objections and is set to raise the issue with the Minister for Transport.

Mr Bellingham said: "It would be an ill-considered and unwise economy to remove a safety measure that was deemed to be necessary 40 years ago when there was about 75 per cent less traffic on the road."

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But the Alliance fears the move could soon be replicated on the Wisbech to Guyhirn stretch of the A47, where a study was recently carried out to see whether lighting should be replaced or removed.

Adrian Gunson, chairman of the A47 Alliance, said: "We accept that the lights are coming to the end of their useful lives, but we fundamentally disagree with the jump in logic that suggests that because there are fewer accidents than you would expect now, the same will be true if the lights are removed.

"To remove lighting from this relatively short stretch, which includes two bus stops, is a retrograde step."

West Norfolk Councillor Vivienne Spikings, vice-chairman of the A47 Alliance, added: "Any saving in not replacing the lights will be completely pointless if it leads to a worse accident record between the two roundabouts."

• The A47 Alliance is made up of councils, MPs, Chambers of Commerce, the RAC Foundation and the East of England Regional Assembly.

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