MPs secure debate in Westminster on future of the A120

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MPs from across East Anglia put forward their case to dual the A120 in a parliamentary debate last week. Led by Braintree MP James Cleverly, the one-hour debate was attended by Department for Transport Minister, Nusrat Ghani MP, and officials. The arguments made by MPs were powerful and passionate and urged an integrated transport strategy for the region, including the A12 improvements and rail, and this was noted by the Minster in her response.

Support for the favoured A120 route recently announced by Essex County Council was also strong. Other MPs who also contributed to the debate were: The Rt Hon Priti Patel MP (Witham), The Hon Sir Bernard Jenkin MP (Harwich and North Essex), Will Quince MP (Colchester), Giles Watling MP (Clacton), Vicky Ford MP (Chelmsford), James Cartlidge MP (South Suffolk) and Peter Aldous MP (Waveney). Rachael Maskell MP (York) responded for the Opposition and Nusrat Ghani MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Transport, spoke for the Government and acknowledged the work done by Essex County Council.

George Kieffer, Chairman of the Haven Gateway Partnership, commented:

“As we’ve seen from this debate, support for the A120 along its entire length is not only strong in North Essex but across the entire county as well as into Suffolk. Our MPs continue to make a strong and persuasive case to Government and whilst the Minster could not commit to supporting the project as her Department is going through its own processes, it is clear the A120 will be hard case to ignore. I look forward to the Department’s announcement of the Road Investment Strategy 2 next year.”

James Cleverly, MP for Braintree added:

“I was pleased to stand with colleagues from neighbouring constituencies in both Essex and Suffolk in pushing the case for an improved A120. We all agree that improvement works are vital for the wider area and present a fantastic opportunity for the country as a whole. It was good to hear the Minister listen carefully to the concerns raised and it is comforting to know that our points will be relayed to the Department of Transport.”