PRESSURE is mounting to find a solution to the traffic congestion in Fordingbridge's narrow High Street as more residents are complaining about traffic queues and tailbacks.

The town mayor Malcolm Connolly told the Journal that “little or nothing” had been done during the last 50 years to tackle the town’s escalating traffic problems.

But now he said the town council was putting together a management strategy to be presented to New Forest District Council and Hampshire County Council.

Last week, the Journal reported on the tailbacks caused by a Tesco lorry unloading outside the store just before Christmas.

Since then more residents have come forward with problems associated with delivery vehicles and rogue drivers who park on double yellow lines and block the free flow of traffic.

Resident Pat Roe said: “Why has no mention been made of the congestion caused by other delivery vehicles, such as the brewery lorries, the huge florist lorry at the Co-op, admittedly not during the winter, and all the other articulated lorries which are on their way to Sandleheath Trading Estate?

“All of these add to problems at the other end of the High Street. I am not excusing Tesco, as they are not the only culprits, but the list is too long to name them all.

“We have yellow lines to stop parking but it appears this does not seem to apply to some drivers.”

Mrs Roe added: “We have many very old buildings in our High Street which were not built to tolerate the current volume of the heavy traffic which passes so very close to them. There must be an answer somewhere.”

Resident Keith Stewart said: “I try my hardest to avoid driving through Fordingbridge in the mornings as there is more often than not a delivery vehicle clogging the High Street.

“I know shops need to be serviced and I don't know what the answer is as I am sure if there was no fresh food in the shops, residents would be upset about that.”

The inaugural meeting of Fordingbridge Town Council's general transport committee, which will be chaired by Alan Lewenden on January 29, is the first step on the road to try to tackle the community’s concerns about speed, congestion and a greater volume of traffic on the roads.

Members of the committee include members of the town council, Fordingbridge Society, the Business Forum and members of the public.

Cllr Connolly said: “It is our intention to review what the situation is and form a management strategy which will be presented to the relevant authorities.

“Money has precluded anything being done to ease our traffic problems and nothing has been done or spent in trying to fix the road situation in Fordingbridge.”