Guidance on responding to Highways England

The Highways England (HE) brochure sets out a “choice” between 2 alternatives (called Option 9 and Option 14).  We are being asked to give our opinion of these two alternatives.

Firstly why are there only these two alternatives being offered?  There is another fully worked-up option – known as Option 16 – that would provide lower accident rates and better delay reduction than the two we’re being presented with – yet this has already been rejected by HE before even being seen by the public!

Please click here to have a look at our analysis of the HE proposals, produced by locals who have had conversations and written contact directly with HE and their representatives.
From the trunk road network point of view, the best choice is pretty clear.

But each of these options have the same damaging implications for Ripley;  the traffic that will be pushed onto local roads.  NOT prominent in the HE brochure is the fact that several local roads will have to be altered and some lose direct access from the A3.

For Ripley this is especially a problem where Wisley Lane (that leads to/from RHS Wisley) is proposed to be blocked off,  and all the traffic routed via a new service road from the Ockham junction roundabout.

This could have a huge effect on Ripley, as the shortest route from south of Ripley to RHS Wisley would be THROUGH THE CENTRE OF RIPLEY via Burnt Common and the High Street.   RHS Wisley already gets over 1M visitors per year.   How many must we endure driving through our village rather than as at present going on the A3 (known as the Ripley bypass, now rather ironically, it seems).

And HE have not “decided” whether this service road should be a 1-way road or a 2-way road. If a two-way road, then the shortest route back south for all those visitors is ALSO through the centre of Ripley!

Please let Highways England know your feelings about having more traffic in Ripley.

1.    Ockham Junction / Wisley Lane service road: this needs the best outcome for Ripley which ideally includes a two-way service road to Junction 10 and none to Ockham junction, but at the very least includes a northern service road from Wisley Lane to Junction 10 to keep traffic away from Ockham junction.  This would not be possible if the cheapest option 14 is chosen.

HE should NOT adopt a 50mph A3 limit between Ockham Junction and Painshill as this will make the route through Ripley even more attractive for traffic from the south.

2.    Main Options affect other local roads, not consulted on:  The choosing Option 9 or 14 for Junction 10 has implications for local non-A3 traffic.  For example,  a Wisley Lane northern service road would not be possible with Option 14.

Why don’t HE make these implications clear?

HE should defer a final decision on Option 9 versus 14 until after making clear options on local service roads etc. and including these for the public to respond to.

3.    RHS Wisley:  RHS Wisley predict an increase in visitors from 1 million annually currently to 1.4 million within a few years, which will only mean a lot more traffic for Ripley.

4.    Environmental issues: the proposed service road via Mill Lane will require land from RHS and several Sequoia trees may need to be removed.

5.    Not taking into account local plans:  HE confirmed that their proposals DO NOT take account of individual projected development sites such as Wisley Airfield and Garlick’s Arch as THOSE DO NOT HAVE PLANNING PERMISSION.

Should Wisley Airfield be approved there would be much more traffic and disruption, including possibly Ockham Junction, and certainly a development of that size would need direct access to the A3/M25 which would clearly make these plans premature.

The timing of the J 10 development plus possible Local Plan developments, could mean major developments of roads, houses and industrial/warehousing from M25 to Wisley Airfield to Garlick’s Arch to A3/A247 junctions lasting anything up to TEN YEARS.

So please, let Highways England know your thoughts on their current proposals.  Their contact details are:-