A section of the main A358 near Sampford Brett was damaged during a prolonged period of wet and cold weather back in March 2018. At the time temporary lights were put in place for emergency repair work and so investigations into the cause of the problem could take place.
This showed substantial damage to the drainage system running under the road. Extensive repairs are required and these are now planned to take place in March 2019 under a road closure.
The proposed works include full upgrade of the drainage system with larger pipes being installed to increase capacity and new grates to stop debris entering the system. The road will also be strengthened and fully resurfaced to provide lasting benefits and reduce the need for future works.
All possible options for carrying out this work have been assessed but unfortunately the work cannot take place without a full road closure. This is expected to take two weeks starting on Monday 18 March 2019.
The below plan shows the location of the works.
Road closures are always the last resort and are only used when no alternative forms of traffic management are available. The road at this location is narrow with no verges and there are two drain lines running parallel to each other. Therefore, due to the need for deep excavations in the road, it will not be possible to safely accommodate vehicles and provide safety zones for the workforce. We must comply with the national codes of practice for road works or we would be breaking the law if we ignored this. Closing the road allows us to dig up both sides of the road simultaneously, reducing the overall duration of the works.
There is never a perfect time to carry out major works like this, but we have tried to avoid key dates, local events and the busy West Somerset tourism season. We accept that it will still have a considerable impact which is why we are publicising the work as early as possible.
Due to the deep excavations in the road it will not be possible to clear the roadworks away each day as the trenches would need to be refilled to allow the road to be reopened.
A diversion route suitable for all vehicles will be signposted on site and is shown in the map below or you can search for it on our roadworks page.
Somerset County Council must advertise a diversion route using the same class of road as that which is being closed. As with any road closure, drivers can use their own local knowledge and judgement to find their own alternatives.
School transport will continue to be provided throughout term time during the closure, with details provided to those affected. Somerset County Council will continue to manage this and will update individuals as required if timings change during the road closure period.
The Number 28 bus service operated by Buses of Somerset will run the normal timetable during the closure but diverting via Raleghs Cross. They will continue to serve Williton and Watchet as part of their diversionary route.
Somerset County Council will fund and provide a temporary shuttle bus running between Williton and Bishops Lydeard to connect with the 28.
The timetable for the shuttle is as follows:
The West Somerset Slinky bus is also available in the Sampford Brett area for those who cannot access these bus stops.
Please follow our @TravelSomerset Twitter account for updates on progress once work is underway.