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Melbury Abbas and Cann Group Parish Council - Proposed Road Safety Plan

Date Posted: 09 Apr 2017

Below is the Plan that this Council has submitted to Dorset County Council regarding their proposed works:- 

In producing this plan we have considered factors affecting both the safety ofresidents in the communities and the needs of the wider area.

* Road Safety in the villages
* Safety of road users
* The local and national economy
* Government policy
To plan for the future we need to examine the problems of the past and howdecisions and policies have affected the current situation.

It is well known nationally that HGVs have a devastating affect on small ruralcommunities clustered on unsuitable road networks. Speed is also recognised as amajor contributory factor and has been the subject of national campaigns.

Here in our Parish just South of Shaftesbury we have three roads taking the flow ofNorth/South traffic between Blandford in the South and Shaftesbury to the North.
The A350 is the primary network route, along with the B3081 and the C13. Thelower route, the A350, was constructed in Victorian times to replace the unsuitableC13 and passes through the villages of Stourpaine, Iwerne Minster, FontmellMagna and Cann in our Parish. It also passes scattered housing on the outskirts ofCompton Abbas and Sutton Waldron. The higher route comprises part of the B3081and the C13 and passes through the villages of Melbury Abbas and Cann Commonand scattered housing on the outskirts of Iwerne Minster.

Both routes are winding and have pinch points that are challenging to larger
vehicles. There has been little to no investment in these roads. It is recognised thatneither route is ideal to cope with increases in traffic predicted for the future.
However the main A350 is a stronger road built to A class standards and is the mainroute for HGVs travelling from the South Eastern Conurbation of Dorset and thePort of Poole to Bristol, Bath the M5, Wales and the North West (DCC A350Challenge Fund bid of 2015). It also has a higher pinch point flow capacity takinginto account HGVs (North and North East Dorset Transport Study 2010). The C13was subject to advisory signs ' Unsuitable for HGVs' until they were removed by
Dorset County Council following a legal challenge by residents on the A350. Since
that time HGVs have increased in size and significant damage has been caused topublic and private property accompanied by a devastating affect on theenvironment.

Dorset County Council have encouraged more traffic to use the higher route andover the past three to four decades have sought to pass the problems of the A350on to the higher route. Action taken include:

* Changing the priority at the junction of the B3081/ C13 making a long straightsection of road from Cannfield Farm on the B3081 to the top of Dinah's Hollow on
the C13.
* This change encouraged larger HGVs to use the route, which then began hittingtrees in Dinah's Hollow.