CREATING a northern link road has been suggested as a way to improve traffic problems in Fordingbridge.

A meeting of Fordingbridge Town Council, which was held last week online via Zoom, heard it had received a proposal suggesting the creation of the link road connecting the “Ashford end right through to the Frynern Court end”

Councillor Mike Jackson said with the concerns over the High Street and traffic it could be a possible solution that could be explored in the town council’s neighbourhood plan.

However, Councillor Anna Wilson said she would be “dead set against it” and that it was “one of the most ecologically sensitive bits of the town”.

Cllr Jackson said: “One of the major concerns of people in the town is the High Street and the lorries going from Sandleheath. Anything we have got that looks to generate some relieving of the traffic by taking it through on reasonably established roads surely should be something we should look at.”

Cllr Wilson suggested putting in a width limit on the High Street and encouraging people to walk into the town.

Cllr Jackson said he felt the northern link was something the council should pursue.

Cllr Wilson added: “I think we need to pursue the problems with traffic in the High Street but I don’t think building another road is the solution.”

New Forest District councillor Annie Bellows said it had to fit in with the district plan and there was “no plan to have a road through there at all” adding it would be down to Highways.

Councillor Malcolm Adams said the width could not be restricted and this would not be practical but Cllr Wilson said it had never been investigated why lorries are coming through the town.

“Before you start carving up the countryside you should do a few surveys,” she added. “We need to address the traffic in the town most definitely.”

Cllr Jackson said: “Come up with a suggestion to how we tackle the traffic in the town. I’ve heard a lot of talk about it but no-one has come up with a solution what we do with the traffic in the town.”

He said the area was earmarked for development in the New Forest District Local Plan and felt the town council should not “throw away an opportunity”.

Councillor Edward Hale added: “There is no ideal solution. We don’t want the traffic through the High Street and we don’t want to lose any of the areas of land we are trying to conserve. I just think we don’t want to close that door.”