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Residents fight plans for new Worcester City stadium in Perdiswell
ANGRY residents in Worcester have launched a shock petition against plans for the city's football club to come to Perdiswell - saying they are being driven "mad" by rising congestion.
People living around Drovers Way, near Bilford Road, say there is mounting concern over all the new developments in the area.
They say they are not against Worcester City FC coming back - but projects like the new planned Lidl on the Archdales site in Warndon, the Marks & Spencer set for Elgar Retail Park and housing development in areas like Claines could make congestion intolerable.
In the last two days 70 people have already lined up to sign the petition due to fears the proposed new stadium will add to the congestion.
Worcester City has been marooned in Kidderminster since the start of this season, playing at Aggborough after moving out of St George's Lane.
The club's supporters trust is submitting a planning application to the city council in just 11 days time (April 16) for a £2.1 million, 4,130 capacity stadium at Perdiswell next to the existing leisure centre.
Resident Lesley Mettrick, of Drovers Way, who has launched the petition, said: "I felt like I had to do this, there are so many issues around congestion around here.
"It feels like we are suddenly having all these new developments, but where will all the cars go?
"We've got the new M&S, which is lovely as I'm a big Marks & Spencer fan, but that will increase congestion.
"The Lidl at Archdales will increase congestion. Then we've got this football stadium.
"It will be a traffic nightmare. We will have to suffer from all these cars - getting across Bilford Road is a nightmare anyway.
"To be honest we're frightened about what it'll do to house prices. It feels like we're being squeezed, it's madness."
Fellow resident Kevin Hunt, 51, a taxi driver of Ryeland Close said: "I want to see Worcester City FC home, but is this really the right site for it?
"I don't think it is. Surely there has to be somewhere better, with less traffic problems."
The club's supporters trust says it welcomes a debate around parking, and that it is working on ways to ease traffic.
There will be some on-site parking, although the trust has not revealed how much yet, and the site is well served by an existing park and ride and bus route.
Rob Crean, trust secretary said: "Once we've submitted it everyone will get the chance to write in with any objections.
"We welcome the debate and are confident any concerns people have can be addressed."
He said the trust was hopeful it can use nearby school car parks, like Tudor Grange Academy, to also help the situation.
Councillor Neil Laurenson said: "We certainly support good leisure facilities that can be used by residents throughout the city and would also like to see Worcester City playing football in Worcester again.
"However, the many concerns of residents will need to be addressed."
The plans will include one main 500-seat stand, a standing terrace, 3G pitch, three full-size grass pitches, two nine aside fields, conference and classroom facilities.
To sign the petition call Mrs Mettrick on 07792 290863.
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