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Accident ignites fears over proposed Ixworth A1088 ghost junction

Renewed calls have been made for a controversial planned ghost junction to be scrapped, following an accident just yards away on Sunday.

The chairman of Ixworth Parish Council is calling for Persimmon Homes to rethink its proposed A1088 ghost junction for a new estate.

When the plans were first submitted in 2016, parish, county and borough councils objected to the ghost junction instead of a fifth spur from a nearby roundabout. Permission was granted at planning appeal.

The site of the proposed 'ghost junction' on the A1088. A yellow statutory noitice can be seen on the telephone post.. (13935386)
The site of the proposed 'ghost junction' on the A1088. A yellow statutory noitice can be seen on the telephone post.. (13935386)

At 1.20pm on Sunday, Essex and Herts Air Ambulance was called to an incident involving a Kia Carens and motorcycle at the A1088 Bardwell Road junction, an estimated 200 yards away from the site of the new junction.

The motorcyclist, aged in his 50s, was airlifted to Addenbrooke’s Hospital with life-changing injuries.

Ben Lord, Ixworth Parish Council chairman, said: "This is the second accident along these lines in two years. My fears are being proven correct. If we are already having serious road traffic accidents before the development comes, what on earth will happen after?

"Persimmon continues to put profits before people. The bottom line is it's cheaper to create one of these junctions."

Cllr John Griffiths, West Suffolk Council leader and Ixworth ward member, said he and many residents shared the parish council's concerns.

"So, too, did every member of St Edmundsbury’s planning committee who refused it before their decision was overruled on appeal by the planning inspector," he said.

"It is not too late but we can only hope, before there are yet more accidents there, that Persimmon and others will listen and take these concerns into account as they bring their planning applications forward."

A spokesman for Persimmon Homes Suffolk said: “The junction was designed in consultation with Suffolk County Council’s highway department with the appropriate road safety audit undertaken for this initial stage of the design.

"The consultation determined the right turn ghost island to be the safest option for this location.”

Any witnesses to the collision should contact Suffolk Police on 101 quoting 41334/19.

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