Work to begin this week on £7m Beccles Southern Relief Road
PUBLISHED: 09:15 22 August 2017 | UPDATED: 09:20 22 August 2017
Construction will begin this week on a long-awaited road for Beccles, which will remove heavy traffic and enhance the local economy.
Work on the £7m Beccles Southern Relief Road is predicted to be completed in just under a year.
The relief road will link the A145 London Road to Ellough, to the south east of the town, providing faster access to Beccles Business Park and the Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft Enterprise areas, which together with the B1127 Copland Way will form a southern and eastern bypass of Beccles.
Richard Stubbings, mayor of Beccles, said: “The road will be great for the people of Beccles as it will be taking the lorries out of the town.
“Like any market town the streets were not built for them.
“With the lorries gone the town will become nicer, safer and with diesel emissions reduced, cleaner.”
He added: “We need the relief road for everyone, both those who live in the town and those who commute in.”
The majority of the funding – £5m – is coming via the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) who in turn received the money as part of a growth deal with the central government.
The remaining £2m is provided by Suffolk County Council.
Funding was awarded in 2014 after a business case showed the new road will support further development of the Ellough Industrial Estate.
Hayley Mace, of New Anglia LEP, said “This road is much needed. Not only for Beccles but will also unlock access to the coast – to Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth.
“It is great to see work finally start.”
She added: “The business case highlighted that the new road will unlock developable land worth £9.5m – so it’s set to bring significant economic benefits to the area.”
The build is being undertaken by the Suffolk-based Jackson Civil Engineering, who previously constructed the Lowestoft Northern Relief Road.
Neil Robinson, regional director of Jackson Civil Engineering, said: “We are delighted to be involved in delivering another major infrastructure that is important for the local economy.
“Everyone is keen to get started and get the road finished.”
While the road looks set to be completed within a year, the hard work began long ago.
James Finch, Suffolk County Council cabinet member for highways and transport, and Mark Bee, leader of Waveney District Council, have been campaigning for the road for more than 20 years.
Mr Finch said: “It has been a dream for many years. I am delighted to be here now to see the start of this project which is so long overdue.
“This road will help the economic opportunities of Beccles and the whole county.
“I am already looking forward to coming back in a year to cut the ribbon.”
Mark Bee, who remembers discussing the road when he first became a councillor, said: “This is a great project for the LEP and county council which hold enormous benefits – it will ease the traffic issues but also be great for the local economy.
“It’s great to see work get under way as it has long been a priority for myself and Waveney MP Peter Aldous.”