Message from Cllr David Bartholomew, County Councillor for Sonning Common Division, comprising:
Binfield Heath; Bix & Assendon; Eye & Dunsden; Harpsden; Highmoor; Rotherfield Greys; Rotherfield Peppard; Shiplake; Sonning Common
As you may be aware, Reading residents have set up an online petition in favour of a new bridge that would link the A329(M) across the Thames to close to the Oxfordshire border somewhere in the vicinity of Playhatch roundabout/Caversham Park Village.
Most of the nine parishes I represent would be affected to some degree by such a bridge and, as a result of press coverage, I am already receiving representations from parish councils and individual constituents. Some are pleased at the prospect of being able to connect with the M4 without fighting their way through Reading, others are alarmed at the prospect of thousands of cars being deposited into Oxfordshire with no supporting infrastructure. Without new infrastructure, drivers would have little choice other than to use the A4155 through Shiplake into Henley, or the B481 through Sonning Common and Rotherfield Peppard to Nettlebed. Of course, the creation of new infrastructure brings its own problems.
With regard to Henley and Sonning bridges, some believe the potential new bridge would alleviate the existing problems, others believe it would make them worse.
I am keen to get more local views and have set up a dedicated Twitter account for this purpose: @ReadingBridge and #newreadingbridge. Please communicate this as you deem appropriate. I will forward a summary of Twitter responses to John Howell MP for his meeting with with Rob Wilson MP in due course.
Cllr David Bartholomew