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End of the road for damaging transport link

A much-loved meadow was saved from a needless road proposal A much-loved meadow was saved from a needless road proposal © Adam Swaine

Over 25 years of campaigning by CPRE West Oxfordshire against the Cogges Link Road have finally been rewarded with success.

Following a protracted public inquiry, it was announced on in the summer of 2012 that the Secretary of State for Transport, Justine Greening, had accepted the report from the inspector, Stephen Roscoe, and ruled against Oxfordshire County Council’s application for compulsory purchase of land, which was essential for the road scheme to go ahead.

The Secretary of State agreed with the inspector that an alternative scheme to relieve some of Witney’s traffic problems would be both less environmentally damaging and less expensive and that the Council should pursue this alternative. This would involve the creation of a new four-way junction on to the A40 at Shore’s Green, east of Witney, which will take through traffic out of the town centre.

Campaigners from CPRE Witney and CPRE Oxfordshire gave evidence at the public inquiry. Their evidence included that increased traffic from the proposed road would cause gridlock, and simply move the traffic problem from one side of the town to the other. It would also destroy an area of environmentally sensitive hay meadow which is an important public asset, used by thousands of local people each year as well as a flood plain.

CPRE also pointed out that the link road would have an adverse effect on an area of undeveloped countryside close to the centre of Witney which is important to the setting of the town. On top of this, it would have reduced the tranquillity of this area and severely compromised the enjoyment of the country park.

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CPRE Oxfordshire's transport campaigning



CPRE evidence showed that increased traffic from the new road would have caused gridlock

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