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Stop Easton Park


By Stop Easton Park
Saturday, November 9, 2019


(With apologies to Bill Bryson)

An irregular collection of thoughts and articles about living in the Dunmow area and the potential impact a New Town of 10,000 houses will have

Last week I was driving west on the B1256 headed towards Tesco when I unfortunately got behind a large cement-mixer lorry, its drum slowly revolving and the lorry’s road wheels turning almost as slowly in unison. Everybody who knows the road also knows it’s too dangerous to overtake safely, the gentle curve to the right obscuring the long view and made worse by the size of the lorry. I was not in a fast car to even attempt the manoeuvre!

I knew immediately the lorry was going to go exactly where I was headed towards. Woodside Way. And just prayed it would turn off to where the new houses were being built rather than head on towards Thaxted.

But then things got worse. The cement-mixer lorry caught up to a queue of cars headed by a tractor in the distance. So there we all were doing less than 10mph around the two roundabouts near Tesco and down Woodside Way.

If I could have safely read War and Peace during this journey I would have got through a good few pages. But eventually the cement-mixer lorry did turn off at one of the entrances to the building site. And the tractor, amazingly, didn’t turn left at the B184 towards Thaxted but headed back towards Dunmow! The queue of cars and vans also gradually dissipated once on the B184.

But I got to thinking. When building work commences at Easton Park on Dunmow New Town we may not have cement-mixer lorries to worry about (they’ll mix cement on-site) but there will be a lot more construction traffic, some large, some as slow-moving as that lorry. And tractor. (But tractors are a rarity and a lot more acceptable in the country, especially during harvest time.)

As a consequence there will be a lot more traffic on the road during peak times. You can already start seeing the impact on Woodside Way with the relatively small amount of building going on there. Roads will become muddy. Oh, they will be regularly cleaned. But invariably not immediately before you or I will be travelling on them! I hear people remarking now how busy the roads are around Dunmow compared to a few years ago. Remember how they are now. They’ll never be as quiet again.

Dunmow New Town (aka Easton Park Garden Community, if you’re seduced by corporate/politic-speak) will take decades to build - at least a generation. (Generation = 30 years.) Think about that. A whole generation will know nothing of the relative ease we can travel from A to B now. With no serious plans to upgrade the A120 and some 55,000 houses alone, planned from Colchester to Stansted spanning the A120 PLUS construction traffic and building site workers travelling to/from their respective sites, any travel problems we currently experience with cement-mixer lorries and tractors is going seem like a doddle. And all this without the Rapid Bus Transit proposal muddying the waters further. But that’s another article!

Stop Easton Park

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