Sunday, 1 March 2009

Motorway Traffic Row


Further to the current research into the Penkridge incident, a review of back copies of the Cannock Advertiser (which amalgamated with the Cannock Courier in April 1964)
To form the Hednesford Advertiser-Courier; located at Cannock Library produced little new information.
Although there is an interesting footnote covering the period in question a front-page article in the paper dated 24th April 1964 under the heading…
“Motorway Traffic Row”
The article related to an ongoing complaint about the frequent use of the New Penkridge Road by motorway construction traffic, in particular lorries apparently for no reason leaving the road and ending up in ditches on what appeared to be a regular basis with most traffic occurring around midnight; early hours of the morning.
While Penkridge Police stated that unless the lorries were in collision with another vehicle or persons were injured these incidents did not have to be reported by the drivers concerned.
Nevertheless the residences of nearby Pillaton Farm were considerably unhappy with the nuisance caused by the construction lorries that had been using the road for the last three months.
The M6 Motorway extension under construction (Dunston-Laney Green) designed to relieve the traffic congestion through Penkridge and Gailey Island tends to dominate the local paper albeit indirectly through a series of road traffic accidents over the early months of 1964 including fatalities caused by the high levels of traffic around these areas.
Back in 1964 I would have thought traffic would be considerably modest by today's standards, although this did make me wonder about the volume of traffic in the area at the alleged time of the crash/retrieval. The mystery surrounding the lorries could be little more than fatigue or the drivers being partial to the odd tipple when on nights, although given the three month time period over which these events occured i would have thought at least one collision with another vehicle would almost certainly have occured had this been the case.

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