Roadworks on Letchworth street add to existing queueing woes, say frustrated drivers

PUBLISHED: 17:25 30 April 2015 | UPDATED: 17:25 30 April 2015

The queue for the Waste and Household Recycling Centre on Blackhorse Road in Letchworth. Credit: @thestape.

The queue for the Waste and Household Recycling Centre on Blackhorse Road in Letchworth. Credit: @thestape.

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Roadworks have added to existing queueing woes on a Letchworth street, say frustrated drivers.

Temporary lights – planned to be in place until next Friday, May 8 – have been installed on Blackhorse Road as part of roadworks delivering a drainage system for a 159-dwelling housing development.

Developers Barratt Homes hopes to have people living in the site – formerly occupied by the derelict George W King factory – by June.

The road has already seen long queues for the household waste recycling centre in the past three weeks, and many feel the roadworks have made things worse.

Herts County Council, which manages the refuse site, altered opening hours at its tips at the start of the year, meaning the Letchworth facility is closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and the Stevenage site is shut on Thursdays and Fridays.

Rodney Cole, who lives in Green Lane, said: “The traffic for the building site, the factories in Blackhorse Road and the refuse site is interrupted by traffic lights which only allow a small number of vehicles to enter from Green Lane at a time.

“When the new homes were first mooted we mentioned the possible traffic problems, but our warnings went unheeded.”

Last week the Letchworth District Gardeners Association said customers had been put off tackling the tip traffic to visit their Flint Road store.

Association secretary Jo Tofts said: “The traffic lights by the new development have just added to the confusion.”

Barratt Homes has named the new development Madden Gardens.

It says the name has been chosen in honour of the town’s MP in the 1960s who was linked with the garden city movement – but his name has been spelled incorrectly.

Martin Maddan was Tory MP for Hitchin, which then included Letchworth, until 1964.

Barratt North Thames sales director Karly Williams said: “The development has been designed with the garden city philosophy in mind and has benefitted from initial design input from the Heritage Foundation.”

Mr Cole said: “I have contacted those bodies which should be concerned expressing my concern that the gentleman spelled his name Maddan, a fact I have confirmed by reference to Hansard, but no-one is at all interested.

“Having had to endure six months of noisy, dirty demolition and building work which was approved by people who have not had to experience that work and its possible consequences, I find the whole business maddening.”

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