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Weekly demands government action on road after four die in two days

A weekly newspaper has demanded urgent improvements to a notorious road on its patch after two fatal car crashes in as many days.

The North Devon Journal and its sister website Devon Live have launched the We Want It Now campaign calling for £250m of improvements to the North Devon link road after four people died in accidents last week.

Three children were among the victims after the two crashes on the A361, which connects the M5 motorway with Barnstaple and the North Devon coast.

More than 2,500 people signed the Journal’s petition on the subject within 48 hours of the campaign’s launch.  It is calling for Westminster to establish a timetable for the improvements as a matter of urgency.

We Need It

Since its inception in the 1980s the design of the road has been widely criticised because overtaking opportunities are limited, while accidents are common at junctions and when two lanes merge into one.

Devon Live editor Patrick Phelvin said: “We don’t yet know what caused these recent tragic accidents but we do know that the proposed improvements have been a very long time coming and they will make the road safer.

“With Brexit and plenty of other demands for public money there are concerns that the project will slip, as attention is focused elsewhere.

“We want to remind central Government of the importance of this project and ensure it is completed in a timely manner.”

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