CABINET will discuss moving the A350 Melksham bypass project forward.

On Tuesday, November 30 Wiltshire Council’s top brass will consider feedback from the public consultations and the financial implications of proceeding with the scheme.

Councillors will also consider improving the walking and cycling routes in the area either as part of the scheme or separately.

Cabinet member for transport, Dr Mark McClelland said: “We had a similar response rate to our second consultation as we did to the first, with 760 questionnaire responses and 480 emails most recently, compared to 1,018 responses and 175 emails during the first consultation.

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“Local contributors and stakeholders made some valuable comments about the scheme, particularly about the route, and cabinet will consider this, along with whether to submit the outline business case to the DfT.

“There is still a long way to go for this scheme, and we will look at it again once we have feedback from DfT and once we know the outcome of National Highways’ north-south connectivity study, which will look at routes between the M4 and the south coast. This is likely to be in the summer of 2022.

“We’ll also look at the financial aspect. Although this project would mostly be funded by the government, if it goes ahead there would also have to be a contribution from the council.

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“A bypass on the A350 at Melksham would reduce congestion for local residents and businesses, and improve journey times on this important route through Wiltshire, which serves as a key regional link from the M4 to the port of Poole.”