Northampton Gateway Rail Freight Interchange

The views expressed in this page do not represent those of the Planning Inspectorate. This page consists of content submitted to the Planning Inspectorate by the public and other interested parties, giving their views of this proposal.

Northampton Gateway Rail Freight Interchange

Received 13 July 2018
From Mark Redding


I strongly object to this application for the following reasons:

1. The proposed turning restrictions (no right turn in or out) on the Courteenhall Road and A508 junction will divert traffic down far less suitable country lanes (Knock Lane and Stoke Road) and into the centre of Blisworth. This has serious safety and congestion implications.

2. The above situation will be further exacerbated by the construction of the Roade by-pass which will encourage the use of Knock Lane and Stoke Road to access Blisworth and to cut through to the A43 beyond. This has serious safety implications.

3. The inevitable use of local roads by HGV and light commercial traffic cannot be prevented. The maximum weight limits proposed are not practically enforceable. There is a significant safety risk to people, pets and also the myriad equine facilities in the area.

4. There is nothing to prevent site traffic that is coming from the west on the A43 from using Blisworth as a short-cut to by-pass junction 15a on the M1. This has serious implications for traffic in the village and the well-being of residents living alongside the affected roads (particularly at the 6.00am and 10.00pm shift changes when the roads are ordinarily quiet).

5. The huge increased volume of traffic concentrated on a small section of the strategic highway will have a detrimental effect on the quality of life for many communities. The lack of an available pool of local labour will further exacerbate traffic congestion in the wider area.

6. An inevitable increase in crime and antisocial behaviour (including littering) has not been recognised by the Applicant as a consequence of industrialisation of a rural environment and will result in an adverse impact on the quality of life and an increased personal safety risk.

7. No consideration has been given to the implications of other NSIPs (SRFIs) in the region in terms of the cumulative impact on the railway (are there sufficient paths to satisfy all) or the efficacy of a national strategic network. There is very strong evidence that there is insufficient demand to justify all the proposed SRFIs and inadequate capacity on the rail network to facilitate an effective modal shift at this location.

8. Contrary to the NPS NN and the EIA regulations the Applicant has failed to produce an alternative sites assessment. The Applicant, therefore, has provided no clear and cogent argument that this is the least environmentally damaging location for the next SRFI nor that it is the most appropriate location from a national strategic perspective.

9. The development is contrary to a number of local planning policies and would be built on greenfield land designated as an important strategic gap to help maintain the rural character of South Northants and to protect the villages south of the M1 from coalescence with Northampton.

10. The cumulative impact of Northampton Gateway and Rail Central on the local and wider community would be massive and devastating. There is no mitigation that can make the two in any way acceptable but the Applicant has still failed to address the community’s concerns in their formal application