FOOD waste and general recycling bins aren’t being collected in parts of Cheshire East because of the chaos caused by the A530 Middlewich Road closure, a councillor said.

Three councillors asked direct questions about the 80 week closure at Crewe which is causing havoc for people trying to get to Leighton Hospital, the surrounding areas, Middlewich and Crewe.

None were answered at Thursday’s meeting of the audit and governance committee, despite the interim head of highways being present via video link.

Former council leader Rachel Bailey (Audlem, Con) also asked about claims work hadn’t even started.


Winsford Guardian:

Cllr Rachel Bailey

“The perception that’s emerging on social media and in person in relation to the 80 week closure between Pyms Lane on the A530 and Flowers Lane, Leighton Hospital campus, is that no works have commenced,” said Cllr Bailey.

“I’m also aware now of the impact this road closure is having on our excellent waste collection service. The food and garden waste recycling plant is at Leighton.

“People are asking me when their bin will be collected and when they must put it out, because it hasn’t been [collected] because of the delay the waste operatives are experiencing navigating the road closure.

“If you think of Audlem, the closest route to the recycling centre in Cledford is the A530. If you think of recycling and food waste, which we don’t want to have left on people’s properties in bins, again the closet route is the A530.”

Committee chair Margaret Simon (Wistaston, Con) said: “We really need to be well briefed on the up-to-date situation on a major closure like that, not least in that it could possibly impact on emergency vehicles.

Winsford Guardian:

Cllr Margaret Simon

“Do they still have access to the entire road if they are desperate to use it and things like that because we don’t know the answers to that.”

Cllr Patrick Redstone (Odd Rode, Con) asked: “Where was that decision to close that road for 80 weeks made?”

Crewe West councillor Marilyn Houston (Lab), whose ward is often gridlocked because of the closure, said she had attended a briefing on the matter.

“I know what’s happening that the work has started and it’s been explained to me it’s work that isn’t necessarily seen by the public eye,” she said, but didn’t elaborate further.

She added: “At that briefing, the point was made that all members need to have that information and that an invitation would be extended to all members.”

Interim director of highways John David  talked about the context of the schemes but did not answer any of the questions raised, saying colleague Chris Hindle was in charge of the project and questions should be addressed to him.

“We started a journey a few months ago which is all around informing all stakeholders better and that journey includes looking in terms of how we improve our communications at all levels,” he said.

“I’m also very keen to make sure that we promote the benefits of these schemes. I really appreciate there is issues and difficulties of the kind we’re discussing but it is also worthwhile reflecting why we’re doing that.”

The Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) has asked a number of questions over the past two weeks about the impact of the road closure.

The council replied with a lengthy statement detailing why the works are being done.

It did say: “We will be monitoring the effect on the highways and engaging with major stakeholders in the area as the works move forward. This is an ongoing exercise where we take public observations seriously and, if possible, incorporate suggestions into our overall network management.

“As the Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has recently confirmed, we have been working closely with them to ensure that everyone is fully aware of the access routes to the hospital, which are being maintained at all times.”

The LDRS has today re-submitted some of those questions and others raised since.