ON May 31, 2017, I wrote to the Somerset Highways department complaining that rate and road tax payers are not getting value for money for the following reasons:

  • In Corkscrew Lane, the metal railing protecting the footpath, adjacent to the allotments, has been demolished by vehicles on at least two occasions. Temporary plastic boards were erected about two years ago. This has been a complete eyesore, with no adequate protection for residents.
  • A road resurfacing job was carried out in the lane about a year ago. This new surface, on the bend just before the damaged railings, has already been worn away, revealing the original road surface. There is a 20mph speed sign going into this bend, which is obviously not being observed, hence the accidents causing damage to the metal railings.
  • Many people use Corkscrew Lane, i.e. children, cyclists, pedestrians and a growing amount of traffic. There is no footpath in the lane from Whitmore Lane to Staplegrove cricket and football ground. Using this lane can be very frightening, to say the least, especially for pedestrians. For safety reasons, alone, I asked if a footpath could be provided all through the lane.

As I did not receive an acknowledgement, I sent a reminder on June 26, 2017.

I finally received a reply from Somerset Highways on July 3, 2017, stating:

  • Damaged rails: The letter agreed there was an accident some time ago. Funding has been made available for this and the work will be carried out in the next three months. Over five months have now passed and still no work has been carried out.
  • Road surface: They agreed the road dressing failed on the bend. The surfaces are scheduled to be repaired in the summer of 2017. Summer and autumn have now gone and it is even more dangerous in the winter period.
  • Lack of footpath in Corkscrew Lane: The request for a footpath between Whitmore Lane junction and the cricket club has been a proposal for several years, apparently. It does not appear that we are going to get anywhere with this request.

Meanwhile, on the proposed new North Taunton housing development, for 1,600 homes.

The developers say they cannot afford to put in a spine road until they have sold 500 houses, now reduced to 200 houses.

It is unbelievable that they propose to start building the houses in the notorious Corkscrew Lane, with NO FOOTPATH.

The council has now capitulated and given in to the developers’ proposals.

With all the valid objections to the proposals and the extra traffic from new residents, the lane will become even more dangerous.

Taunton may become known as the gridlocked town instead of the garden town.