£24.3m to hit superfast highway

EDITOR – Pedestrians and car drivers alike are going to enjoy a far safer time on the roads after February 12.

That is the date that our county council is going to finish installing new state-of-the-art traffic lights for the Queen Street – Willingham Road junction.

They will cost £120,000 and will include a detector system designed to stop vehicles as long as people are crossing.

West Lindsey is now working hard with Market Rasen to formulate Area or Neighbourhood Plans. This is another way of saying we will help to fund projects which citizens tell us are important.

In the framework of our internal restructuring, we have now assigned senior officers to work with and advise communities about the best ways forward.

It is all part of the idea behind localism, or the devolving of more powers away from central government and directly back to towns and villages.

I recently met with top officials in Whitehall at the DCLG (Department for Communities and Local Government) to present West Lindsey’s case to become a community budget pilot. We shall be in further discussions and are optimistic about our chances.

Another area that will have a major impact on our town is the Central Lincolnshire Joint Strategic Plannning Committee.

It’s a plan for the next 20 years, and involves a co-operation venture between four local authorities, something in itself very rare for the UK.

Included in our policies will be outlines for more than 42,000 new homes, better transport, and more land for industrial and commercial enterprises to create a minimum of 15,000 new jobs.

We expect the population to increase by 90,000, which is the number for West Lindsey today.

So we are laying the foundation for a prosperous future as we emerge from the recession.

Finally, the all-important issue of super-fast broadband is being tackled. We need at least 30mbit/s to stimulate and retain economic health and progress.

Following our successful bid we have been awarded £14.3 million, and have chosen to add to it from our capital programme a further £10 million.

May you all enjoy a happy and healthy holiday season.

Coun Burt Keimach

Leader, WLDC and county councillor, Market Rasen Wolds