Secretary of State approves plans for a new link road and junction connecting the A338 with Wessex Fields

Posted on Thursday 14th March 2019

Plans for a new link road and junction directly connecting the A338 with the Wessex Fields Business Park and Royal Bournemouth Hospital can now go ahead after the Secretary of State refused the request to call in the decision.

Leader of Bournemouth Council, Councillor John Beesley said: We are delighted that the Secretary of State has concluded that he need not intervene in this important local issue and we thank him for that.

“Our plans to build a new link road and junction connecting the A338 with the Wessex Fields Business Park and the Hospital are already supported by central government funding and will provide a much needed second access to the Royal Bournemouth Hospital, unlock a major economic development site, as well as ease congestion in the future.

“We can now finally get on with building this much needed scheme providing a major boost to the local economy.”

Councillor Philip Broadhead, portfolio holder for the Economy, added: “To get the final go-ahead is fantastic news. The investment will support the creation of around 2,000 new jobs at Wessex Fields Business Park, safeguard the existing 10,000 jobs in the area, as well as provide a much needed second access to the Royal Bournemouth Hospital site.”

The planning application had already been subjected to exhaustive scrutiny as well as significant public consultation.  Members of Bournemouth’s Planning Board voted in January to support the recommendation to grant planning permission subject to today’s outcome by the Secretary of State.

Gary Powell, Head of Highways and Transportation, said: “We would like to thank the very many people and businesses who have supported us in our plans, in particular by writing to the Local Planning Authority to urge approval of the application.”

The scheme has been backed by both the Royal Bournemouth Hospital and the Local Enterprise Partnership who is funding the scheme.

Richard Renaut, Chief Operating Officer at Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said; “The Trust fully supports the plans to develop a new link road and junction as it will alleviate congestion ensuring our patients, visitors and hardworking staff do not have to endure delays accessing or leaving the site.”

Lorna Carver, Director of Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership, said; “Transforming the infrastructure in and around Wessex Fields and connecting it to the A338 will enable the area to reach its full economic potential, creating and safeguarding thousands of jobs, driving business growth across Dorset and providing a second access route to Royal Bournemouth Hospital.”