VILLAGERS fear a plan to close a level crossing will leave them stranded.
Residents in the Llyndir Lane area of Burton are furious they face a diversion of more than two miles to get to neighbouring Rossett if proposals by Network Rail to close the Broad Oak level crossing go ahead.
Network Rail has said it might be possible to build a bridge over the railway, but that would require a one-year road closure.
One opponent of the plans, Steven Rogers, 54, said: “Residents who would be affected by the move are fuming as they will be effectively cut off from the local village. The plan means I would have a diversion of more than two miles to get to Rossett. It is causing a great deal of anger and frustration for people in the community.”
Network Rail is proposing the closure as part of a scheme by the Welsh Government to double the Wrexham to Chester track system – specifically between Rossett junction and Saltney junction.
The scheme involves moving the existing track across and laying new track beside it. Work began last month and is due to be completed by next spring.
Mr Rogers said he was shocked when he received a letter giving details of the plans to shut Broad Oak level crossing. He stressed the facility should be retained and safety measures improved.
A spokesman for Network Rail said: “At Broad Oak level crossing we are faced with a number of challenges. As the railway will be operating at a higher speed, for safety reasons we cannot retain the crossing beyond our main commissioning date of spring 2015. Network Rail is keen to eliminate level crossing risk entirely and, as such, our preference is to remove Broad Oak crossing. This could involve closing the road at each side of the railway line and permanently diverting traffic to the nearest crossing.
“However, we are also investigating the option of constructing a road bridge over the railway. Should the option of a road bridge be taken forward, the project will require a temporary closure of the road for one year, likely to begin in August this year.
“Having now identified the key issues, we are keen to meet users of Broad Oak level crossing to discuss the possible options in advance of making any final decisions. We invite members of the public to attend our community drop-in on Tuesday, July 29, from 3pm to 7pm at the Rossett and Burton Village Hall, Station Road, Rossett.
“Members of the project team will be at the venue during this time to help with any queries or concerns they may have.”