Call for an end to Geddington Road restrictions

Police close a section of Geddington Road in Corby as a Citroen transit van is wedged between the concrete bollards on the morning of Thursday 22nd December 2011.
Police close a section of Geddington Road in Corby as a Citroen transit van is wedged between the concrete bollards on the morning of Thursday 22nd December 2011.
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A call has been made for action to end the two-year saga of road restrictions on a busy Corby road.

In January 2011 a weight limit of three tonnes was imposed on vehicles going over the railway bridge in Geddington Road.

The move was made by Northamptonshire County Council after a structural survey by bridge owner Tata Steel raised concerns about its load-bearing capacity.

Due to drivers ignoring the weight restriction order, concrete chicanes were installed to prevent HGVs going over the bridge. Numerous lorries have been stuck between the concrete blocks and businesses have complained the restriction has caused disruption and hit trade.

Corby and East Northamptonshire MP Andy Sawford has contacted the county council calling for action to end the restrictions.

In a reply the authority revealed it is still in talks with Tata Steel over improvements to the bridge, expected to cost £1m.

Mr Sawford said: “The Geddington Road saga has dragged on and on and I am very disappointed to hear that there is no end in sight.

“Lorries and vans are having to detour, which is bad for business, and emergency service vehicles can’t get through. There have been traffic jams and hold-ups when vehicles have got stuck or damaged.”

Cllr John McGhee, leader of the Labour group on the county council, said: “The people and businesses of Corby have had enough.”

The highways department has told Mr Sawford that the county council has carried out its own tests, with Tata Steel’s permission, and is undertaking a structural assessment of the bridge.

A letter to the MP from Debbie Thorne, head of Northamptonshire highways, says: “So far it appears to agree with Tata Steel’s earlier structural assessment with a load capacity of three tonnes.

“Unfortunately, due to various uncertainties, I am unable to say when work is likely to be carried out and the road fully opened again.”