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A303 Stonehenge

A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down (Stonehenge)

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Spotlight on Community Forum
September 11th, 2019

Spotlight on Community Forum

Community Forum meeting July

Our Community Forum brings together the A303 Stonehenge project team with communities and groups to share information, discuss local concerns and get involved in wider legacy ambitions. Members meet every couple of months and are briefed on what’s happening. They also have the opportunity to ask questions to members of the project team.

Here’s what members think about the forum:

What’s it all about?

“We have an Independent Chair – so everyone gets a chance to put across their opinion confident that it will get a fair hearing.” – Chris Coats, Orcheston resident

“But it works both ways. Highways England provides us with the information and there’s also tremendous opportunity to get feedback over our specific problems.” – Dave Hassett, Shrewton Traffic Group

What’s the main benefit of attending?

“The Community Forum, and particularly the chairman, has proved invaluable in giving representatives an overview of the DCO process and a very accurate view of the way the Planning Inspectors would run the process.  It has also provided a useful start to the Legacies and Benefits opportunities process that has been run on other Highways England road schemes.” Cllr Dr Andrew Shuttleworth, representing Winterbourne Stoke Parish Council

It gave me the welcome chance to talk to local Parish Councillors, and our local cycling group, about ideas for improving off-road access links over the World Heritage Site for pedestrians, horse riders and cyclists.” – Myra Bennett, British Horse Society County Access Officer for Wiltshire

How do you see it working in the future?

“We’ve talked a bit already in the community forum about the legacy that Highways England wants to leave behind. We have an opportunity to get involved in that and this will help us do it.” Kathi Sharp, Durrington resident

Forum meetings take place regularly – if your local group or community aren’t represented and you’d like to attend on their behalf  please get in touch by emailing A303Stonehenge@highwaysengland.co.uk 


New images bring scheme to life
September 10th, 2019

New images bring scheme to life

What the existing A303 could look like

New images published as part of the Examination process are bringing the proposed Amesbury to Berwick Down (Stonehenge) scheme to life.

The computer-generated images show what the scheme could look like once completed, in 2026.

The existing A303 in the Stonehenge World Heritage Site will be transformed to a restricted byway, giving pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders improved access through the pre-historic landscape, enhancing their experience.

New rights of way are just some of the many benefits the scheme will deliver to the area if given the go-ahead in April 2020.

Other benefits include improved journey times, the creation of new habitats for birds and other local fauna and the reconnection of the  severed northern and southern halves of the World Heritage Site.

Have a look at the updated images on our interactive map now and get a feel for how our scheme could look.

Latest information on the Examination process can be found via the Planning Inspectorate’s website.

 


Natural England joins July’s Community Forum
August 2nd, 2019

Natural England joins July’s Community Forum

Community Forum meeting 24 July at Antrobus House

The latest Community Forum welcomed Charles Routh, team leader for Natural England who talked about his work with Highways England to increase biodiversity in the area as part of the A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down scheme.  

Within the Development Consent Order (DCO) application currently being examined, there’s a proposal for almost 400 acres of new chalk grassland habitat to be created, which will increase wildlife numbers.  

Members were also updated on the progress of the scheme and given the opportunity to ask questions on a range of issuesForum members represent communities from the local area and include Shrewton, Winterbourne Stoke, Berwick St James, Chitterne, Durrington and many more areas

Independent Chair Jim Claydon helps communities, local organisations and groups put forward their ideas and or concerns on the road scheme

If you’d like a copy of the Community Forum meeting notes, or you’d like to attend on behalf of your community at September’s meeting, please email the project team on a303stonehenge@highwaysengland.co.uk  


Proposed changes consultation opens
July 26th, 2019

Proposed changes consultation opens

Photo of site notice

We are proposing to make some minor changes to the Amesbury to Berwick Down scheme in direct response to feedback we’ve received during the current examination process.

We are carrying out a public consultation to ensure that anyone who might have a view on the changes has an opportunity to comment.

Eight minor ‘non-material’ changes are being proposed – ranging from adding a new access into a field for a landowner, changing the classification (or road numbering) of certain sections of road, to closing and grassing over a layby near Winterbourne Stoke.

All the changes we are proposing are outlined in our 2-page leaflet and in more detail in our consultation booklet. The consultation booklet can also be viewed at Amesbury Library and Salisbury Library. USBs are available on request.

How to have your say

Please contact us with any comments or feedback by:

  • Email: A303Stonehenge@highwaysengland.co.uk
  • Post: A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down, Highways England, Temple Quay House, 2 The Square, Temple Quay, Bristol BS1 6HA

The consultation runs from Friday 26 July until 11.59pm on Monday 26 August. After it has closed, we will write a report on the consultation and submit it to the examination on 6 September.


Minor changes proposed to scheme – Consultation to open later today
July 26th, 2019

Minor changes proposed to scheme – Consultation to open later today

Photo of existing A303 road

We are proposing to make some minor changes to the Amesbury to Berwick Down scheme in direct response to feedback we’ve received during the current examination process.

We will be carrying out a public consultation to ensure that anyone who might have a view on the changes has an opportunity to comment.

All the changes we are proposing will be outlined in detail in a leaflet and consultation booklet which will be available on our website shortly.

The consultation will open at lunchtime today (Friday 26 July) and close at 11.59pm on Monday 26 August.


Search for contractors to build A303 scheme launched
July 15th, 2019

Search for contractors to build A303 scheme launched

Photo of existing A303 fillled with traffic

The Government has given us the go-ahead to start looking for potential contractors to build A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down (Stonehenge) scheme.

We’ve placed a contract notice in the Official Union of the European Union (OJEU) to begin the 18-month process to find a world-class contractor.

This does not pre-empt the outcome of the current examination. We need to start our procurement now to ensure we can start work on schedule in 2021, if the scheme gets planning consent.

This is an important milestone for us as it demonstrates the Government’s continued commitment and shows we’re on track as planned.

Read our media release for further information on the process.


Environmental Statement goes digital
July 10th, 2019

Environmental Statement goes digital

Picture of Digital Environmental Statement front page

This week we launched our new digital Environmental Statement.

We’ve taken the 7,000 pages, 250 documents and 100+ maps that made up of our more traditional  Environmental Statement that was submitted to the Planning Inspectorate as part of our DCO application – and created an interactive version.

It’s a totally new way of examining the environmental and heritage context of the scheme.

The digital Environmental Statement is specially designed to be simple to navigate so you can find  information quickly and easily. It contains maps, reports and visualisations – which can be explored interactively.  

Take a look here.


Summer Solstice pause for ground investigation work
June 21st, 2019

Summer Solstice pause for ground investigation work

Disappearing road video

Our latest ground investigation work is now well underway  –  but we’ve respectfully halted to ensure no visible or audible disruption to the Summer Solstice – which took place on 21 June.

Our proposed scheme will  remove the sight and sound of traffic from Stonehenge and restore the natural setting of the world famous monument. Creating tranquillity and reuniting the World Heritage site landscape is central to our plans and will improve the experience for visitors to Stonehenge.

Watch our short video clip below and see how the road will disappear.

To find out more about the ground investigation work you can read the Q&A we’ve put together. We hope you find it useful.

 


What we’re doing on site this Summer
June 12th, 2019

What we’re doing on site this Summer

Photo of existing A303

We will be conducting ground investigation surveys in the coming months along the proposed route for the A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down (Stonehenge) scheme, with most of the work taking place in the western part of the scheme.

You may wonder what exactly is happening, especially if you spot us working alongside the A303. To help, we’ve put together a Q&A we hope you find useful. If you want to know more, please get in touch, our contact details are at the bottom of this page.

What are ground investigation surveys?

Ground investigation (known as GI) surveys are carried out to understand the geology of the ground along the route of any road construction scheme.

What’s involved?

We will be drilling a number of boreholes, and digging shallow trial pits at various locations including along the western approach to the tunnel and where new bridges are proposed.

Before starting any work, we will be carrying out careful archaeological surveys at each location to ensure we avoid any risk of damage.

Most of the survey locations will be near the current A303 and none of the work will be carried out close to residential properties.

Why are you doing these surveys now?

We’ve already conducted surveys over the past couple of years which has helped us draw up the preliminary design of the scheme.  This is currently being examined as part of the planning or “Development Consent Order” process. 

To ensure we can start construction on schedule in 2021 (if the scheme gets the go-ahead) we need to start looking for a main works contractor at the end of this year.   As part of this tender process, we need to gather more in-depth information about the ground and water conditions so that construction companies have a complete picture when they bid to design and build the scheme.

Will the work disturb the Summer solstice?

No. We fully understand the importance of the Summer solstice and will pause our activity the day before (Thursday 20 June) to avoid any disruption to this event. We will recommence works on Monday 24 June.

Will there be any road closures on the A303?

There are no planned road closures and drivers should expect no disruption from our survey activity.

Get in Touch:

By email: A303Stonehenge@highwaysengland.co.uk

By Phone: 0330 123 5000

Follow us:

Twitter: @A303Stonehenge


Community Forum latest
June 7th, 2019

Community Forum latest

Photo of Community Forum meeting May 2019

Residents from Chitterne, Winterbourne Stoke, Shrewton and Berwick St James were among the attendees of our latest community forum held on 8 May.

Dominating the discussions were the Open Floor Hearings (which took place the following week).  Independent Chair Jim Claydon and the Highways England team fielded questions including detailed queries about what happens during these and June’s Issue Specific hearings,  as well as discussing the forthcoming ground investigation works.

If you’d like a copy of the Community Forum meeting notes, or if you’d like to attend on behalf of your community at July’s meeting, please email the project team on a303stonehenge@highwaysengland.co.uk

The Community Forum brings together people representing local communities and groups with the project team to help maximise the benefits that the A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down (Stonehenge) scheme will offer to the area.


Issue Specific Hearings begin in Salisbury
June 7th, 2019

Issue Specific Hearings begin in Salisbury

Issue Specific Hearing 6 June 2019 at City Hall, Salisbury

Tuesday 4 June saw the first of the Issue Specific Hearings take place in Salisbury’s City Hall as part of the Development Consent Order (DCO) Examination.

The first hearing covered the draft DCO order, with future meetings expected to deal with issues such as cultural heritage, transport and biodiversity. At the hearings, the Examining Authority will take a deeper look at these issues, hearing evidence from a variety of organisations and individuals. In total seven hearings will take place in June.

Further information on these hearings can be found on the Planning Inspectorates website.

These follow the Open Floor Hearings (which took place in May), where a range of different people talked about various issues.


Public Hearings Announced
May 7th, 2019

Public Hearings Announced

Planning Inspectors will be listening to a whole range of views about the A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down scheme at Open Floor Hearings at City Hall in Salisbury. Members of the public will be speaking at one of four hearings  – two daytime and two evening sessions  – on Wednesday 22 and Thursday 23 May. The hearings start at 10am and 7pm, with doors opening 30 minutes before.

To find out more about these and other hearings including the accompanied site visit:  https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/projects/south-west/a303-stonehenge/


Examination kicks off following preliminary meeting
May 7th, 2019

Examination kicks off following preliminary meeting

The six-month Examination period has officially started following the preliminary meeting held at Salisbury racecourse on Tuesday 2 April.

The five inspectors appointed by the Planning Inspectorate to conduct the Examination were introduced to a mixed audience of local residents, stakeholders and interest groups.

At the meeting, details of procedures, deadlines and the timetable for the next six months were discussed – with the next steps being confirmed in an official “Rule 8” letter issued on 11 April.


Community Forum
May 7th, 2019

Community Forum

Our Community Forum – which brings people together representing local communities and groups with the project team – met up on 27 March, under the guidance of independent chair Jim Claydon.

The main topic at this meeting was of course the upcoming Examination – Jim was able to use his previous planning experience to help demystify the process.

We gave an update about how we are developing initiatives to leave a positive legacy for the local area – Community Forum members will be involved in discussions over the coming months. Watch this space for details!