Decision on £250m port road ‘must be made locally’

A senior Liverpool city region councillor tells protestors the decision on plans for a new £250m road close to the Port of Liverpool must be made locally and not by Government. Tony McDonough reports

Combined Authority
Cllr Steve Foulkes addresses members of Save Rimrose Valley at Mann Island


Senior Liverpool city region councillor Steve Foulkes told protestors fighting plans for a £250m road that the decision whether it goes ahead must be made here on Merseyside.

Wirral councillor Steve Foulkes, chair of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Transport Committee, addressed members of the Save Rimrose Valley campaign group in Liverpool city centre.

They had marched six miles in the rain to meet Cllr Foulkes outside the Combined Authority headquarters in Mann Island at the weekend.

Save Rimrose Valley was formed after National Highways first unveiled plans for the Port of Liverpool Access Road in 2017. It is designed to alleviate congestion on Dunningsbridge Road.

It would see Rimrose Valley Country Park cut in half by the proposed A5036 Princess Way. However, the scheme has been beset by delays. And in March this year Transport Secretary, Mark Harper further delayed the project.

He has moved it into the next period of Road Investment Strategy projects, collectively known as RIS3, to be developed between 2025 and 2030.

However, Save Rimrose Valley campaigners believe they need to keep pushing to try to kill the project once and for all. Around 70 protestors made the journey in poor weather on Saturday to meet with Cllr Foulkes. 

He told them: “(The Transport Committee) is a democratic organisation and the important thing about democratic organisations is they must listen to the people. It’s quite clear what your message is; you want an alternative to this scheme.

“We don’t believe it’s the right solution (and) the committee and the Mayor are dedicated to clean air and better air quality. You do not do that by building more roads.

“The way forward is to improve the rail freight network. That’s the proper solution. The infrastructure is nearly there, and it wouldn’t take much to link it to the port.

“We’re demanding that National Highways’ funding be devolved to the Liverpool city region and that we decide the solution, working with our people and with your ideas to make sure we get the best solution for the future and for generations ahead.

“…Together, we will use all our powers of influence and do all we can possibly do to get the agenda to move to what you want.”


Save Rimrose Valley
Members of Save Rimrose Valley march along the Leeds-Liverpool Canal. Picture by Mike Fahy
Save Rimrose Valley
Members of Save Rimrose Valley outside the Combined Authority on Mann Island


Spokesperson for Save Rimrose Valley, Stuart Bennett, said organisers were “blown away” by the attendance on the march despite the poor weather conditions.

He added: “The words of Cllr Foulkes are a huge boost as it means we now have the backing of all three levels of our political structure; our council, both of our Westminster MPs and now the Combined Authority.

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“It would be madness for the Government and National Highways to push ahead with this road project in the face of this level of opposition.

“It also demonstrates that people power really does work and where better for us to prove this than in the heart of Liverpool itself.

“We won’t let up until this scheme is scrapped and new plans are offered, which put the interests of every resident in South Sefton first, not merely an afterthought of the port’s expansion.”

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