Save Rimrose campaign gains further support

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Stuart Bennett, Friends of Rimrose Valley, and Crispin Truman, CPRE The Countryside Charity. Pic © Ash Rowe JMU Journalism

A group campaigning to stop planned road developments on a Merseyside country park is now gaining support from national organisations.

A 10km-walk through Rimrose Valley was hosted by CPRE The Countryside Charity on Sunday, in an effort to “highlight the beauty and importance” of the area which they say is “currently under threat” from Highways England.

The Friends of Rimrose Valley group began campaigning after Highways England announced plans for the Port of Liverpool Access scheme in 2017.

The road, which will cut through the park’s green space, is intended to ease congestion on the A5036; the main connection between the Port of Liverpool and further motorway networks.

Chief Executive of CPRE, Cripsin Truman, had travelled from London to join the walk on Sunday. He told JMU Journalism: “The idea is just to get people out, exploring the area and raising the profile of the campaign.”

YouTube: Ashley Rowe

Stuart Bennett, speaking for the Friends of Rimrose Valley, told JMU Journalism: “It was using Rimrose which led me to getting involved with the campaign. When our daughter was born a few years ago, one of the best ways of getting out of the house with a screaming baby is to go out for a walk and Rimrose is right on our doorstep. I’ve got really fond memories of that.

“Loads of people use this as a recreational space, families. I’ve lost count of the number of people who’ve told us that they learned to ride their bike here.”

Walkers trekking through Rimrose Valley on Sunday. Pic © Ash Rowe JMU Journalism

A spokesperson for Highways England told JMU Journalism: “We understand the strength of feeling about the proposals for the new A5036 bypass and we’re committed to working with everyone affected.

“We are currently carrying out environmental surveys and ground investigation work, which will help us to put the best possible design to public consultation for views later this year.”

They added: “People’s input will be vital in developing the best solution; one that provides extra capacity for the port, draws traffic away from local roads and balances the needs of the community.”

About Ash Rowe, JMU Journalism