Bercow’s fury over HS2 Ltd’s plans to close A418 road

Red: Relief road planned by HS2. Black: The HS2 line, which would pass over the A418
Red: Relief road planned by HS2. Black: The HS2 line, which would pass over the A418

CONTROVERSIAL plans that could see part of the busy A418 temporarily closed to make way for HS2 are being fought by residents in a tiny hamlet in the Vale.

On Saturday 60 residents of Sedrup, just outside Aylesbury, met Vale MP John Bercow to tell him about their fears if the move goes ahead.

Under the plans the HS2 line would pass under the A418 between the roundabout on the edge of Fairford Leys and the Bugle Horn pub.

While it’s being built, cars would be diverted down a brand new relief road connecting the two junctions and passing within 15 metres of Sedrup.

Once the HS2 track is laid, a bridge would be built over the line allowing the route of the A418 to be restored.

Chris Barnes, one of the villagers said: “Residents are worried about the effect of the 18,000 vehicles a day that use the A418 passing near Sedrup.

“We’re told the relief road would only be used for three years but many residents expect it to remain open after that time.”

Calley Dairy Farm in Sedrup would be split in two and the farmer will have to walk across the relief road to reach his fields and animals.

A spokesman for HS2 Ltd said this week: “The information displayed at the HS2 roadshows showed a new possible temporary diversion on the A418.

“This is purely indicative of possible roadworks during construction of the line as we have not yet done the detailed design work on this or any road diversion. If the government decides to go ahead with HS2 at the end of this year we would then start the detailed design of both the line and the associated roadworks.

“During this phase, HS2 Ltd would work with the highways authorities to develop the best possible alignment for the route and associated works.”

At Saturday’s meeting, above, Buckingham MP Mr Bercow, who openly opposes HS2, was presented with a 200 strong petition which he will now pass to transport secretary Philip Hammond and HS2 Ltd.

He said “I stand fully behind the Sedrup campaign against the proposed A418 relief road, which came as a rude shock to both them and me.

“There was no consultation, no notification, and the plans were discovered, entirely by chance, at a HS2 roadshow where it became apparent that the land had been earmarked.

“There was no effort made either by the Department for Transport or HS2 to inform local people of the proposal,

“I hope that the powers-that-be can be persuaded to see sense and cancel their plans.”