Report by Granada Reports correspondent Paul Crone
Campaigners fighting plans to bulldoze a country park to make way for a dual carriageway have marched into Liverpool to highlight their campaign.
National Highways' want to build the £250m Port of Liverpool Access Road, which campaigners say would see Rimrose Valley being destroyed.
Rimrose Valley is a 3.5km country park and valley which forms a border between Crosby and Litherland in the borough of Sefton.
Around 75 campaigners from the Save Rimrose Valley group braved the rain on Saturday 5 August to walk six miles into Liverpool city centre in the next stage of their battle to stop the new road.
They stopped off the headquarters of Liverpool City Region Combined Authority on Mann Island to meet Cllr Steve Foulkes, chair of the authority’s Transport Committee.
National Highways first unveiled plans for the road in 2017, which is designed to tackle the congestion on Dunningsbridge Road, between the M58, Switch Island and Liverpool.
If the road is built it will mean Rimrose Valley Country Park would be cut in half.
Work on the road was due to start in 2020, but it was delayed due to the pandemic, and the project has now been pushed back until at least 2025.
Campaigners are pleased the plans have been delayed, but say they will keep fighting until the scheme is scrapped altogether.
Speaking on behalf of Save Rimrose, Stuart Bennett said: "It’s outrageous that National Highways wants to build on the only remaining green space of its kind in our already heavily polluted borough.
"The road would just make things worse.
"Rather than building more destructive roads, we need to be investing in public transport, active travel provision and – in this instance – alternative means of servicing a port in a residential setting.
"Until this happens, people in South Sefton will continue to die, or have their lives shortened by air pollution."
In response to the campaign National Highways said in a statement: "We welcome the public's ideas for improving safety and the local economy and at the same time minimising impact on the environment."
Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To know...