Sidmouth chamber pens letter to PM over transport

PUBLISHED: 09:00 09 March 2014 | UPDATED: 10:49 13 March 2014

BUSINESS leaders in Sidmouth have penned a letter to the Prime Minister calling for the Government to invest in the South West's road and rail networks.

The chamber of commerce wants the issue of transport infrastructure addressed by David Cameron ‘as a matter of extreme urgency’.

Members were stirred to write to the premier following reports that Londoners enjoyed public investment of £2,731 per head on transport projects in 2011 – while in the South West it was £19.

The letter calls for intervention works to protect the ‘glorious’ existing rail route via Dawlish.

“What we do not need is 20 years of chaos, uncertainly and wasted money, while alternative routes are considered,” says chamber chairman Steven Kendall-Torry.

“The flood interruptions on the railway lines across the Somerset Levels may affect Sidmouth even more than the Dawlish problem. Therefore good road infrastructure is vital. The long awaited dualling of the A303 all of the way from the M3 to the M5 would significantly add to the resilience of East Devon’s links to London and the rest of the southern part of the UK.”

He adds that the ‘whole thing could be paid for several times over’ if the HS2 project was scrapped.

Business leaders in the town have supported similar correspondence sent to Mr Cameron from Plymouth’s city council and chamber of commerce.

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