Spalding

Families left in limbo as relief road threatens to demolish homes

This story is over

Residents have said they have been “left in limbo” after a planned £100 million-plus major bypass could see their family homes demolished.

The Spalding Western Relief Road is currently undergoing consultation on two routes which will form the middle section of the road.

The project will provide a new route around the west side of the town, linking Spalding Common in the south to Spalding Road/Pinchbeck Road in the north.

However, those living on Bourne Road, along with South Drove, Horseshoe Road and Pinchbeck Road, say they only found out about the plans after neighbours attended a recent consultation event.

Catherine Roberts, who lives with her husband Frank on Bourne Road, said she is one of around nine properties in a row which could be affected.

Catherine and Frank joined others at a meeting at Bromley Hall, in Pode Hole, to express their concerns. Photo: Daniel Jaines

She said: “There are no winners in Bourne Road only losers. It is very emotive and I have not slept for days as no-one can tell us when the decision will be made.

“We are left in limbo waiting for a letter to drop through the letter box asking us to meet them to discuss the compulsory order.”

Mr and Mrs Roberts designed and built their mock tudor property for more than £300,000 around 20 years ago and have spent thousands more since on maintenance and upgrades.

It was meant to be their forever home and they saw their grandchildren grow up there.

“When we left the meeting we got the impression there is no choice. It is happening, but where they won’t say. That can’t be right; the lives of nine families torn apart,” said Mrs Roberts.

“So we sit and wait a month, a year, five years? In dread that we are the unfortunate ones not being able to live our lives or sell the property  –  house sales are already falling through – and not knowing whether to improve or decorate etc.”

She criticised the county council for not communicating directly with residents, adding that ‘not everyone reads newspapers or trawls through websites’, and accusing them of a “lack of compassion or understanding”.

Lincolnshire County Councillor Angela Newton. Photo: Daniel Jaines

Mr and Mrs Roberts are not the only ones affected. County and district councillor Angela Newton, one of the ward members for the area, put together her own meeting after hearing concerns from residents.

She also enlisted the help of residents to deliver her own newsletter to those affected to let them know.

She said: “People were going into the event not knowing they were likely to be affected to the extent that they could be subject to things like Compulsory Purchase Orders.

“A lot of people said they had only heard about the scheme at that point.

“They were quite aggrieved the council hadn’t hand delivered any letters which would tell them their property would be affected.”

Councillor Richard Davies, executive member for highways at the county council, addresses residents affected by the Spalding Relief Road at a meeting at Bromley Hall in Pode Hole, near Spalding. Picture: Daniel Jaines.

Lincolnshire County Councillor Richard Davies, executive member for highways, has apologised for any distress the situation has caused and said he will be investigating why residents were not contacted directly.

He stressed plans were at an early stage and that the route was not yet fixed, adding that, due to a lack of funding, it could “potentially take a decade or more” before construction can begin.

The proposed £100 million Spalding Relief Road. Picture: Lincolnshire County Council.

SUBSCRIBE TO LOCAL DEMOCRACY WEEKLY, our exclusive email newsletter with highlights from our coverage every week and insights and analysis from our local democracy reporters.

Spotted an error? Please notify us by selecting that text and pressing Ctrl+Enter.