Transport Scotland this week postponed their latest crazy plan to operate overnight closures on the A82 through North Ballachulish and Onich at the start of the tourist season. The decision follows fierce opposition from local residents and businesses, supported by me as local councillor.
It’s brilliant news that the public body, responsible for our trunk roads, finally listened to local opinion and postponed the planned works, due to start on 21st April. This would have involved two weeks of overnight closures in the run up to one of the busi-est times of the year in South Lochaber. In fact, the works would have clashed with both the Moidart Road Run and the beginning of the Pre 65 Trials. There was also no contingency for an overrun in the works; this could have resulted in disruption during the Scottish Six Day Trials.
This now gives Transport Scotland the opportunity to plan these works properly, rather than sneaking out a consultation a few days before Easter. Following this week’s Nether Lochaber Community Council, the local community has suggested the works should go ahead immediately after the English half-term holiday or in early March next year. That is no different from the works that were successfully completed earlier this year and it would still fit in with this financial year’s allocation of funding. I have written to Transport Scotland asking them to take this course of action. You can demonstrate community support for this more sensible option by writing to Mr Bob Mitchell, Area Manager North for Transport Scotland. You can email: Bob.Mitchell@transportscotland.gsi.gov.uk or write to: Transport Scotland, Buchanan House, 58 Port Dundas Road, Glasgow, G4 0HF
This success is a great example of residents working together to stop a big, overbearing public body ignoring their views and trying to push through a proposal before anyone notices.