The reason for all these rubber cables in Harborough

A pair of the rubber cables between Church Street and High Street in Market Harborough
A pair of the rubber cables between Church Street and High Street in Market Harborough

Rubber cables have appeared across many roads all across Market Harborough.

The cables, in 16 locations around the town, are part of a major traffic survey being carried out by Leicestershire County Council.

A spokesman for the county council told the Mail: “The surveys are part of regular traffic counts carried out to assess the number of vehicles in and around Market Harborough.

“The results help us to understand current demands on the road network so we can include any increases in traffic within our future transport strategy.”

The spokesman said there would not be any road closures, and the installation of the equipment throughout this week “will cause minimum disruption”.

Some residents on social media website Twitter had complained that the car-counting cables had been introduced at a bad time, with Kettering Road and Coventry Road both being closed.

But the County Hall spokesman explained the traffic data recording from the cables will not start until this Monday, April 20, for a two-week period thereafter.

Traffic flows around the town should be back to normal by then as the railway bridge in Kettering Road reopened on Monday and the 15-week closure of Coventry Road ended on Friday.

It comes at a time when the issue of traffic has become a contentious one.

The chairman of Market Harborough Civic Society, John Tillotson, warned in the Mail last week that the planned development of 1,500 homes to the north-west of Market Harborough could cause major traffic problems in the town and nearby villages in the future.

Many other Harborough residents have also been raising concerns about the existing traffic jams in town at peak times.

But Harborough District Council leader Blake Pain said: “The district council, jointly with Leicestershire County Council, has commissioned a proper highways study to find out what drives the traffic flows all over the district.”

And the council’s portfolio holder for planning, Cllr Phil King added: “Anyone can predict chaos, but I do think some people are over-egging it a bit.”

The full transport study will take a year to complete.

A county council spokesman said it could lead to changes to existing roads or even the creation of new ones.