There are three things the Council does that have a direct effect on every household. They send us a Council Tax bill. They collect the refuse and keep the public spaces clean. They provide the roads and pavements so we can get about. I regularly remind Councillors that these three crucial items need constant attention and good management , though the large spending services like education and social services understandably attract a lot of time and debate.
The Wokingham constituency has faced substantial new development and an expanding population in recent decades. It is good that there are many more decent homes, and many people have settled well in them. The problem is that spending on roads and railways in the previous decade did not keep up, so it is now more difficult to get about. In recent years a large programme of new investment has taken shape. There has been a big improvement and increased capacity at Reading Station. Wokingham now has its new station. Crossrail is nearing completion which will improve links from the Thames Valley into central London.
The Station link road in Wokingham will open soon and help provide more capacity for car travellers. Many people in the area have to get to work by car, and have to drop the children off by car at school. At peaks the roads are particularly congested. The east-west railway line provides a major barrier, with limited crossing points. The river is also a barrier for those wanting to get into Oxfordshire, with limited bridge capacity.
The new plans for Wokingham include a Shinfield and Arborfield bypass to improve the A327 into Reading, and a northern and southern distributor road in Wokingham with a new bridge over the railway. I would like the Council to review the major junctions on the A 329 to see if they can be made safer and if their capacity can be improved. They are currently improving the Coppid Beech roundabout east of Wokingham.
In West Berkshire the main need is for improved maintenance of local roads, which the Council has promised to do.
Published and promoted by Thomas Puddy for John Redwood, both at 30 Rose Street Wokingham RG40 1XU