Dodgy diversion route for A46 roadworks changed

The new diversion route after the old one sent drivers the wrong way down Fieldgate Lane
The new diversion route after the old one sent drivers the wrong way down Fieldgate Lane

A diversion route that would have seen traffic from the A46 heading through narrow Kenilworth streets during long roadworks has been changed after it was realised a mistake had been made.

The section between the Guys Cliffe Interchange and the Stivichall Interchange will be completely closed to drivers in both directions during the night from Monday February 19 to Friday May 25 for major resurfacing work.

The diversion will see certain Kenilworth roads such as Beehive Hill, Upper Spring Lane and Coventry Road used as an alternative route.

But according to the route first issued by Kier Group, who is responsible for the roadworks, drivers were going to be diverted the wrong way down Fieldgate Lane and left onto New Street, which caused major concern.

New Street resident Dana Hunter, who has lived on the street with her partner James Tipping since last May, was dismayed to hear about the initial diversion route.

During more minor roadworks a couple of weeks ago, large lorries diverted down New Street kept the couple awake at night.

She said: “From about 12 until 4am, there must have been 150 articulated lorries. For two nights we couldn’t get any sleep.

“When we saw we were going to have two months of it, we were despairing.”

But after she and Warwick district councillor for Abbey ward Cllr George Illingworth contacted Kier, who conduct work on behalf of Highways England, the company admitted a mistake had been made and that the diversion would not include Fieldgate Lane or New Street.

Dana added: “Now we’re absolutely delighted and relieved.

“I don’t usually like to complain, but if you do put forward a good case, you can actually have something changed.

“From what I can gather, they just looked at a map and thought that route would be fine.

However, Cllr Illingworth still had reservations about the revised route.

He added: “Even at night, the A46 is busy. The thought of vehicles using Upper Spring Lane is a bit alarming.

“I understand this will take several weeks, if not months.”

Cllr Illingworth suggested the diversion should use the M40 and the M42 instead of Kenilworth’s streets.

He added; “The local drivers will be able to find their own way - they know what they’re doing.

“But I just can’t envisage the amount of traffic that’s using the A46, particularly articulated lorries, using those streets.”

The A46 will be closed from 8pm to 6am while the roadworks take place.

Heading northbound, drivers will be diverted via the A46 northbound exit slip towards Budbrooke Roundabout, the A4177, the A452, Upper Spring Lane, Coventry Road, the A429, and the A45 before reaching the Stivichall Interchange.

Emergency access will be maintained at all times.