Objectors: ‘Don’t build by-pass next to school’

Traffic on the A6 heading towards the Broughton roundabout
Traffic on the A6 heading towards the Broughton roundabout
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A major road should not be built next to a school, according to objectors to the proposed Broughton Bypass.

The second day of a six-day public inquiry heard from the Broughton Bypass Review Group, who put forward the concerns of the local primary school, church and museum.

Despite claims from County Council experts that the road would rid the village of traffic, pollution and noise problems, objectors said neighbours were “devastated” by the plans.

Chris Cooper, of the review group, told the hearing at Preston Grasshoppers Rugby Club: “Our clients’ observations were made in the positive interests, not only of the school, church and museum, but also in the interest of the wider community of Lancashire.

“Our clients are devastated at what lies before them in regards to the construction of the bypass as presently designed and the lasting legacy on the village. It is our clients’ objective to retain the present rural setting of this community asset as far as it is possible to do so.”

The group raised fears over issues including noise and air pollution, and members were questioned by John Barrett, counsel for Lancashire County Council. Mr Cooper said: “Our clients believe building a major road next to an existing school should not be permitted.

“The school classrooms and the statutory outdoor classroom would face directly onto and parallel to the proposed highway.

“Primary schools would not be built next to major highways and neither should major highways be built next to a primary school.”

He described the area as an “active, vibrant community” and said: “Our clients have no objection in principle to a small bypass in Broughton village and recognise the benefit to noise and air quality and congestion.”

Lancashire County Council is asking HM Inspector Diane Lewis to grant a compulsory purchase order and a side roads order to allow the Broughton Bypass to go ahead.

Experts had previously told the hearing the village had suffered congestion and the associated environmental impacts for more than 40 years.