The A120 campaign hosted its Westminster Parliamentary Reception last night (Tuesday 17th July) in the company of over 120 business supporters and local authority leaders. The Reception was co-hosted with 7 of the region’s MPs: James Cartlidge MP (South Suffolk), James Cleverly MP (Braintree), Kemi Badenoch MP (Saffron Walden), Sir Bernard Jenkin MP (Harwich and North Essex), Priti Patel MP (Witham), Will Quince MP (Colchester) and Giles Watling MP (Clacton). Vicky Ford MP (Chelmsford) and Andrew Rosindell MP (Romford) also came to lend their support.
The Reception marked the announcement of the favoured route option (route D) for the A120. Last night’s event follows similarly successful events with local MPs in recent months in Braintree and Colchester, and a Westminster Hall Debate in June, where MPs made their case to Department for Transport Ministers.
In addition to a welcome by Will Quince MP (Colchester), last night’s Reception featured speeches by Cllr Kevin Bentley (Deputy Leader, Essex County Council), George Kieffer (Chair, A120 Campaign), Priti Patel MP (Witham) and James Cleverly MP (Braintree).
George Kieffer, commented:
“Last night’s Reception proved yet again that our MPs, local authority leaders and businesses speak with one voice. We have well and truly rallied behind Route D and that will be heard loud and clear at DfT. Our supporters now include not just MPs in North Essex and South Suffolk but across East Anglia and London. This is route of national significance and our growing support is testament to that.”
Cllr Kevin Bentley added:
“I was delighted to see the huge amount of support across the spectrum from MPs, businesses and local government colleagues for Option D as the favoured route for the A120. The campaign now switches to persuading the government of the merits of this critically important and vital strategic route which links an international airport to an international seaport. This is more than just about a road, this is about people, their families, jobs and the economic growth of the region and UKPLC. I would urge everyone to back this campaign and ensure our part of the world gets a fair share of infrastructure investment.”
Priti Patel MP added:
“The A120 between Braintree and Marks Tey is no longer fit for purpose. Dualling the road as it runs through the Witham constituency is essential to improve road safety and to support economic growth across the region. I have been campaigning and working with local communities, councils and businesses to get this scheme progressed. We all need to pull together now and focus on presenting a strong and robust case to the Government to secure the investment needed to get this road upgraded.”
Will Quince MP added:
“The dualling of the A120 is such an important project for local residents and businesses as it is vital for unlocking economic growth across our region. I and my colleagues will continue to work alongside local employers to make the business case for this scheme and secure funding as part of the next Road Investment Strategy programme.”