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Letter: A35 closure a blessing for Emery Down?

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SIR – There have been many letters opposing the closure of the A35 next month – but am I alone in hoping that this may be a blessing in disguise for Emery Down?

It might bring some welcome respite from our appalling traffic problem and alleviate the endless stream of vehicles that stream relentlessly through our village all day long.

Mill Lane has always been an increasing problem, with fast-moving commuter traffic using us as a rat-run and an unofficial Lyndhurst bypass.

The A35 will be closed for months
The A35 will be closed for months

But now, this last year particularly, the C17 between Stoney Cross and Swan Green has been used as a direct link through our village from the other direction, between the A31 and the A35. One lane of this road is almost permanently blocked by residents' cars and those belonging to pub customers and people who simply find it a convenient place to park and go off walking in the Forest all day.

It has caused chaos, and for those whose gateways open directly onto the road it is becoming increasingly dangerous to venture out. We are quite often subject to a torrent of abuse from motorists being forced to slow down!

Not only do we take our lives in our hands but we have to endure hours of listening to throbbing revving engines, hooting and shouting, and the constant smell of exhaust fumes – plus the added danger of the Forest animals stepping out unexpectedly between the row of parked vehicles into the flow of traffic.

At the inquiry back in the 1980s when the A31 was supposedly “improved”, we were assured that this would solve all the traffic problems in this area and they would become a thing of the past. But instead they seem to be growing increasingly worse!

I seem to also remember that one recommendation at the time of the enquiry was that the A35 be allowed to revert back to a gravel track! I wish! What a wonderful thought!

Perhaps, just for a matter of a few months, Emery Down may become once again the peaceful little Forest village that it once used to be.

Mrs J.A. Booth,
Emery Down

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