I was deeply disappointed to learn that the Farthinghoe Bypass was not included in the road schemes put forward for funding through the new Major Road Network ahead of the deadline for submissions yesterday.
A bypass for Farthinghoe is long overdue, and the village is the only one on the A422/A421 between Banbury and Milton Keynes not to have benefited from a bypass.
Along with residents in Farthinghoe and the Parish Council – as well as other road users and three of the major freight haulage and transport associations – I have been calling for Northants County Council, the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership, and England’s Economic Heartland Strategic Alliance to work together on a joint bid for funding through the Department for Transport’s MRN. This had been agreed in principle for many months, and I share the community’s frustration that – at the eleventh hour – we were informed that no bid would be forthcoming due to other schemes in Northamptonshire already being promoted and NCC’s view that there was more work to do, particularly around design, before the Farthinghoe Bypass scheme would be ready for delivery.
I am meeting all the involved parties on the 12th September to discuss a way forward on this, and in the meantime I have written to the Department for Transport to ask what other funding mechanisms they might suggest for our bypass.
I also plan to meet with the new Secretary of State for Transport, the Rt Hon. Grant Shapps MP, as soon as possible to discuss the Farthinghoe Bypass with him.
The delivery of this vital piece of infrastructure for my constituency remains one of my top priorities, and I will continue to do everything I can to secure it. I would like to thank the Parish Council – particularly Cllrs Mick Morris and John Grant – for their continued perseverance on this, and please do get in touch with me if you have any questions or concerns.