‘No proposals’ to replace Stag Roundabout with underpass says council leader

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A political row has broken out after a Rotherham MP accused the council of wanting to install new subways under a busy roundabout in the borough.

The leader of Rotherham Council says there are ‘no plans’ for underpasses at the Stag Roundabout, with a government document detailing plans for a number of transport schemes in South Yorkshire saying roundabouts with subways will be replaced with new junctions.

The Stag Roundabout improvements, which will include priority for buses and pedestrian crossings, are part of a £50m investment from the City Region Sustainable Transport Settlements (CRSTS), which aims to enable people to prioritise public transport, walking and cycling over car use.

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A spreadsheet detailing the plans on the government’s website states: “Replacement of roundabout with subways with a new junction with bus priority and improved pedestrian and cycle crossing.”

‘No proposals’ to replace Stag Roundabout with underpass says council leader‘No proposals’ to replace Stag Roundabout with underpass says council leader
‘No proposals’ to replace Stag Roundabout with underpass says council leader

Alexander Stafford, Conservative MP for Rother Valley, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that ‘no one wants an underpass’, and that residents want ‘safe pedestrian crossings on Wickersley Road and East Bawtry Road away from the main crossings – what they are getting is a patchwork of cycle lanes and anti-car measures’.

“The Labour council aren’t listening – and the Labour ward councillors are asleep at the wheel, ignorant to what is going on in their own wards, while the Labour leadership push ahead with their war on the motorists,” he added.

"This has all been very top-down - officials and senior councillors devising schemes they want to see. There has been no consultation as far as I'm aware.”

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Mr Stafford posted the plans on his social media, accusing the council of having ‘no idea’ about the plans that had been signed off.

However, Councillor Chris Read, leader of RMBC, said that there is no proposal to install subways or underpasses at Stag Roundabout.

He said: “The document he seems to be referring to explicitly says ‘replacement of roundabout with subways with a new junction’.

“All the roundabouts with subways are being considered for measures that would replace the subways. In general, we expect to remove subways. There are no subways at the Stag, they cannot be replaced.

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“This is sadly the kind of fear-mongering that you might expect from someone sitting on the internet digging up obscure documents to post on social media, not the representation residents deserve from their actual Member of Parliament.

“He is playing politics once again with people’s fears in the hope of stirring up some electoral advantage as the Conservatives drift further and further away from the public. I’m sure the residents of Rother Valley will see it for what it is.

“I’m glad that the government agreed in principle funding to help improve transport in Rotherham, and of course, we are bound by their policies as to what we can spend it on.

“Residents should be assured that any scheme that does come forward will be subject to full public consultation, which is both what we would want to do, and what the government’s policy in relation to this specific funding requires.”