TOWN councillor Emma Nishigaki has warned the pledge to tackle Evesham’s traffic troubles will only bear fruit if local knowledge is properly tapped into.

Wychavon District Council has announced an action plan to solve issues arising from congestion around the town on the back of a summit involving MP Nigel Huddleston, Worcestershire County Council, Wychavon District Council, Evesham Town Council and various other bodies.

READ MORE: Summit held over Evesham traffic chaos

“Several potential projects” to improve junctions, signage, parking and the configuration of the roads form part of the short-term plan with “more ambitious remodelling”, including town centre redesign, housing and economic growth beyond that.

Cllr Nishigaki, who launched an online petition against a controversial one-way system in Evesham back in May, welcomed the talks but argued meaningful change could only be implemented by those at the coalface.

“I think it is a good thing that they have had this summit with more local people,” she said.

“The issue that I have is that people with county council responsibility don’t live in Evesham. They feel qualified to make decisions that micromanage the traffic in the town when they have absolutely no understanding of the system at all.

“The councillors involved need to have full knowledge of the micro problems within an area. Historically, and currently, the people responsible at counties are not local to the town.

“I think it is important for local decisions to be made by local people, councillors and residents, rather than people in remote locations.

“They could listen to the people who use the road network, although I believe (Cllr) Bradley Thomas was involved and he lives in Badsey.

“It is a step in the right direction.”

Cllr Nishigaki reiterated her opposition to the one-way system in Avon Street, which “basically diverts articulated lorries down a narrow Victorian street” as well as highlighting issues with disabled street parking following the regeneration of the high street and calling for “a complete ban on goods vehicles beyond the Briar Close Industrial Estate”.

But they key issue involves a far greater project.

“Any optimism I have is very cautious because the only long-term solution for Evesham is to have the bypass completed,” said Cllr Nishigaki.

“It needs connecting from the Cheltenham Road to the Pershore Road and over the bridge.

“That’s a Highways England matter which would need central government funding. I know it is something Nigel Huddleston has been very good at campaigning for but until it is sorted, anything else is just a sticking plaster.”

  • What are your experiences of traffic in Evesham? What do you make of the proposals? Will they work? Let us know by commenting on Facebook, tweet me @AndyMitchellEJ or email