Southend rat run to be closed during A127 Bell junction roadworks

A rat run motorists can use to avoid road works at The Bell Junction, Southend, is to be closed off by the council.

Denton Approach will be closed at the junction with the A127 from Monday to prevent people from driving down it and speeding through Denton Avenue and Hornby Avenue.

It comes as road works are underway at the Bell Junction, which currently includes the removal of the existing eastbound and westbound traffic signal islands, as well as road surveys.

The Bell Junction footbridge is also set to be demolished overnight between September 18 and September 20.

Councillor Daniel Cowan (Lab), of the St Laurence ward, was behind the traffic order for Denton Approach after he said the council recorded almost a quarter of all traffic coming off the A127 had been speeding.

He said: “Residents have overwhelmingly told me over the last two years that they want this closed off from traffic coming off the A127.

“Council statistics show almost 25 per cent show those going down Hornby Avenue off the A127 are speeding and that is right outside of a school.

“To avoid it becoming worse when roadworks are happening, I asked for an experimental traffic order to be put in place that allows us to close it off as and when we need to.

“We already did it in January when some gas works were being carried out at the Bell Junction and it made a huge difference to local residents.”

“I have pushed for it to be used again now because schools are going back and everyone is still adjusting to social distancing around schools.

“People need to safely drop their children off and collect them, having traffic bombing down there to avoid traffic at the Bell is a recipe for chaos and potential disaster.”

The road will be temporarily closed from Monday.

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Steve Shaw

Local Democracy Reporter