A placard quoting an inquiry into transport strategies seemed to sum up the message to the planning authorities - "There is no infrastructure solution to congestion". Statistics were quoted to support this view, such as that the bypass is expected to be congested itself in less than a decade.
It was also mentioned that roads are the most expensive form of transport to build and that the creation of safe cycling and walking routes as well as investing in bus and rail services creates much more pleasant cities in addition to being cheaper.
"Down with this sort of thing", read a placard poignantly.
A contractor due to fell some oak trees on the route, along with grubbing out the hedgerows and clearing the shrubbery, said that work is due to start there on the 18th or 19th of January. People wanting to find out more about the proposed road before it is built should look at the Roadblock website or contact Friends of the Earth, whose details I don't know but can't be very hard to find. They have collected a lot of information which will save you hunting for it. (For advertising in favour of the bypass, of course, ask John Prescott.)