Plans to close busy Milton Keynes road for a year cause heated debate between MP and council leader

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The MP is causing ‘unnecessary concern’ says council

Plans to close parts of a busy road that leads to the motorway in MK have caused a war of words between MP Ben Everitt and the city’s council leader.

Milton Keynes City Council needs to close chucks of the A509 for a year to enable the huge MK East development, where there will be 5000 new homes built

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Mr Everitt is opposing the closures, say it will cause chaos for Newport Pagnell and surrounding rural villages and also put pressure on city roads where the traffic will be diverted.

MP Ben Everitt (left) and council leader Pete MarlandMP Ben Everitt (left) and council leader Pete Marland
MP Ben Everitt (left) and council leader Pete Marland

He drew up a petition asking the council to think again, and within days it gathered more than1,000 signatures.

He said: “As part of the Labour-Lib Dem council’s MK East expansion plans, the A509 near Newport Pagnell is now set to have closures in place from Monday (25th September) until 31st March 2025.

“Many have questioned why the new access road has not been built in advance of the A509 closure, which would have lessened the traffic impact on Newport Pagnell residents and those in the rural villages...They have had to put up with traffic chaos over the last 18 months thanks to this Labour-Lib Dem Council and they are rightly concerned it’s only going to get worse.”

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Mr Everitt accused the council of “incompetence”, saying: “The Labour-Lib Dem Council has ploughed on with its reckless MK East expansion plans despite my continued opposition and once again they are showing a complete lack of care towards our rural residents in Newport Pagnell and beyond.”

The A509, which leads to the M1 in Milton Keynes, will be closed for at least a yearThe A509, which leads to the M1 in Milton Keynes, will be closed for at least a year
The A509, which leads to the M1 in Milton Keynes, will be closed for at least a year

Today (Wednesday) MK City Council leader, Labour’s Pete Marland, has hit back at the MP.

"Ben Everitt has not submitted any petition to the council properly. Unfortunately he’s causing a lot of unnecessary concern, especially inferring to residents in Olney that the A509 main road to the town will be closed. It will not be. I challenge him to submit the petition properly and attend our full council meeting to do so, that’s the proper process.”

Pete added: “The real question here is if Ben supports over £100m of investment in infrastructure before expansion? What is his alternative proposal? He says he wants infrastructure then opposes it. Nationally he says he supports housing, yet locally he opposes it.”

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His final response refers to recent pictures published on the MP’s social media, showing him posing topless after a swim in a local river.

Pete said: “It’s sad to see more publicity seeking without substance from someone who clearly fears they are going to lose their seat soon and has nothing sensible left to say, although at least he’s kept his shirt on this time.”

The council says there will be “some disruption” due to the A509 closure, but promises they council will work to keep it to a minimum.

They say the closure of the A509 between the M1 junction and Tickford will last initially for 12 months to improve the highway and get the infrastructure in place for the new MK East development.

The work includes widening the road, building a new bridge over the M1, and building new schools and a new GP health centre.

There will be smaller closures after this initial project if required.