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3 November 2011
Stonehenge road closure approved

English Heritage wanted to stop traffic from travelling close to Stonehenge and 'restore the dignity' of the World Heritage Site by closing the A344 road. Following a public inquiry, an independent inspector recommended part of the road could be closed off. Roads minister Mike Penning has approved the plans and £3.5m will be used to improve nearby roads.
     In June 2010 Wiltshire Council granted planning permission for a new visitors centre at Airman's Corner, 1.5 miles (2km) west of Stonehenge. At the public inquiry, opponents claimed the plans would give English Heritage a monopoly on access to the site.
     The scheme will see an 879 metre section of the A344 road from its junction with the A303 closed. Part of the B3086 road from its junction with the A344 will also be closed and 'increased capacity' added at Longbarrow Crossroads. A decision over the remainder of the A344 and other byways will be decided by Wiltshire Council.
     "This is an important contribution to improve the setting of the monument and ensure its preservation as an iconic World Heritage Site," said Mr Penning.

Edited from BBC News (1 November 2011)

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