RESIDENTS have voiced their concern at lack of parking in Knutsford and gridlock in town caused by the regular problems on the M6.

The issues emerged when the Guardian asked people for their views on the merits of creating a bypass to the west of the town.

The idea came from long-time resident Bill Cowburn, who said the bypass was needed because of increasing congestion in the town. His suggested route would link the A50 Manchester Road and the A537 Chelford Road.

Karen Williams said traffic problems in the town had worsened in the 20 years she has lived in the town.

“Any accidents on the motorway cause gridlock in Knutsford whatever time of the day it happens to be,” she said.

“It causes problems for everybody who lives in Knutsford if they’re trying to get to work or travelling into Knutsford and want to do some shopping.

“Also there seems to be too much traffic so there isn’t anywhere to park – you can drive round Knutsford for half an hour trying to find somewhere.

“If a bypass is done properly I think it would make a difference.

“Because we’re going to have a lot of new houses in the area we definitely need something, as at the moment we cannot cope with the current volume of traffic.

“If you add another two to three thousand cars from new people living in the area that’s going to make it worse.”

Harrison Wild, who owns menswear shop Oliver Wild, has lived in Knutsford all his life, and was concerned a bypass would take traffic from the town, which was important for passing trade for retailers.

He said: “There are benefits from having traffic in the town, but there are a lot of cons that come with it as well.

“If they are going to keep traffic through the town they need to offer other places to park, and it’s finding the space in Knutsford that’s the problem.

“People want places to park but don’t want anything built here because it’s an old town and they want it to look old.

“I live two miles from the shop, and it can take me up to 40 minutes to drive home.

“It’s usually caused by the motorway, cars trying to come off and come through and getting stuck in the town, and local people trying to go home. I don’t think a bypass would help that.”

Pulse of Perfumery owner Peter Murray said: “There is an issue with congestion when there’s an incident on the M6, particularly at junction 19, so people filter off and come through the town.

“We lived in Chelford, and coming from there into Knutsford has not been an issue. You get a bottleneck as you come into the area past Legh Road, but the traffic flows and the traffic lights work very well.

“Having been here for seven years as a business and having lived in Knutsford for two I see traffic come and go – it flows – there is the odd frustration of course but I have no issues with the traffic, to be honest, in Knutsford.”