THOUSANDS of people have signed a petition launched to get “the council to rethink the construction” of a relief road near Chard Reservoir.

Serena Wootton, a former town councillor and now the Green Party parliamentary candidate for Yeovil, has launched a petition to protect the reservoir from the creation of the Chard Eastern Relief Road.

So far, the petition has been signed by more than 1,500 people.

Ms Wootton said: “The plan for the Relief Road, a road going very close to the reservoir, has been on the cards for a long, long time.

She said she did not want the issue “to go under the carpet” and started the petition to encourage a public debate.

Chard & Ilminster News: Artist's impression of 252 Homes on A358 Tatworth Road In Chard (Persimmon Homes South West)Artist's impression of 252 Homes on A358 Tatworth Road In Chard (Persimmon Homes South West)

Miss Wootton also said: “It’s time to rethink it. Things have changed, Chard has changed, and the weather and the floods have changed.

“It’s really close to the reservoir, it will have a negative impact on the area. It’s also about the impact of lighting and pollution.”

Miss Wootton also added that “this is a time when the reservoir is needed more” as people use it to “escape” from the town centre as it is seen as a “vital source of both mental and physical wellbeing”.

She also added the area is “one of the only green spaces in the town”.

Miss Wootton added: “I want the council to rethink the construction of the road and come up with an alternative.”

The Chard eastern relief road is a crucial component of South Somerset District Council’s Local Plan and is intended to complement the delivery of new homes to the south and east of the town.

The road will stretch from the A358 Tatworth Road to the A30 Crewkerne Road, taking pressure off the existing ‘Convent Link’ junction.

A spokesperson for South Somerset District Council said: “We can confirm that a report regarding the Chard Eastern Relief Road is scheduled to go to our Area West Committee in September.”

The petition can be found here.