Dangerous A1 junction may receive safety improvement

The junction on the northbound carriageway of the A1.
The junction on the northbound carriageway of the A1.

An investigation is looking at ways of improving the safety of a notorious A1 junction, which has claimed the lives of numerous people.

Highways England (HE) has told the Gazette that it is exploring options at the Guyzance/Swarland crossing on the dual carriageway between Felton and Alnwick.

It comes amid appeals from residents, who recently took to Facebook to call for the ‘hazardous junction’ to be made safer, as part of the £290million A1 upgrade in Northumberland.

The plan is to dual the stretch between Morpeth and Felton and Alnwick and Ellingham, and to improve various crossing points further north. The Guyzance/Swarland junction is not part of this, but HE is looking at it.

A spokeswoman said: “We have started an investigation into the problems at the Guyzance crossroads and are looking at options to improve the safe operation of the junction.

“Work on this investigation is ongoing and it is hoped that any recommended work will be implemented following the completion of the A1 in Northumberland dualling schemes.”

A public consultation is up and running for people to comment on the Morpeth to Felton proposal. As part of this, a video has been released showing what the completed stretch would look like.

Writing on Facebook a fortnight ago, Ryan Jobson, who lives about a mile away from the junction, posted a link to the video, with the words: ‘Very impressive – however, it is hoped that Highways England and planners can incorporate the Swarland/Guyzance junction to these plans.

‘Frequent users of the junction know the hazardous crossing of the A1 at this location. The plans themselves look at Morpeth to Felton, however, some of those proposed junctions do not have the volume of traffic that the Swarland/Guyzance junction gets. Surely, the time to upgrade it is when the A1 is being upgraded.’

Coun Scott Dickinson, ward member for Druridge Bay, backed these calls. He said: “It is a horrendous crossing and my parents had a dreadful accident there a few years ago.

“I would urge them to look at this because it is a really dangerous crossing.”