Peterborough councillors back plans to close rural level crossings

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Councillors have approved plans to close level crossings and replace them with road bridges.

Peterborough City Council’s scrutiny commission for rural communities discussed Network Rail’s plans on Monday.

The rail firm wants to close all the level crossings on the East Coast Main Line, which connects London and Edinburgh. Those covered by Peterborough City Council include two in Helpston, one nearby in Woodcroft Road, east of the village, and one in Lolham.

The level crossing in Tallington would also close.

Alternative access arrangements such as bridges and footpaths would be included for motorists and other travellers.

Although council planning officers admitted to concerns on the impact of traffic in neighbouring villages councillors were more optimistic.

Coun David Sanders (Con) said: “I’m going to state the obvious. You are never going to please all the people all the time. It certainly has my support. It’s doing the greater good for the greatest number of people.

“I accept road closures will increase traffic, but at the Helpston route which I use regularly I’ve all too often seen emergency vehicles stuck at the crossing.”

Coun David Harrington (Peterborough Independents) said: “The advantages of these proposals outweigh the disadvantages but there will be a fall out.”

Full details of the proposals can be found at www.networkrail.co.uk.