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Highways chiefs promise to look into easing traffic queues on A17 at Sutton Bridge

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Highways chiefs have promised to look into ways to ease traffic queues around Cross Keys Bridge on the A17.

Commuter Tina Barkway aired her frustrations about the traffic - and says she can add an extra hour to her evening commute home from King’s Lynn due to the works at Sutton Bridge.

She said contractors are not on hand to manage traffic flows after 6.30pm, and called for people to be on hand until later into the evening to alleviate the pressure.

An aerial view of the Cross Keys bridge and the traffic building up
An aerial view of the Cross Keys bridge and the traffic building up

Mrs Barkway said: “The Sutton Bridge works are a nightmare.

“If the work men stayed until 6.30pm to control the lights to help the evening traffic through then that would be a lot better.”

Mrs Barkway, who has seen queues of traffic spanning up to four miles, says plans should be a long-term solution for the future of the bridge.

A Lincolnshire County Council spokesman said: “The traffic management operatives are contracted to be on site managing the traffic from 7am to 7pm.

“If this is being reported that on a specific date this was not the case, then we will investigate and address any issues that arise as a result.

“Traffic management duties include checking traffic management signage and layouts so this is something we are trying to ensure is monitored accordingly.

“We are aware of a significant increase in traffic volume coming from the King’s Lynn direction in the afternoons and the traffic management operatives have been directed to manage this.”

Current works involve paint and maintenance, and are costing about £1.5m.

Last year, senior county councillors mentioned that a £100 million-plus project will eventually be needed to replace the 1897 bridge, which is a vital link between Lincolnshire and Norfolk.

A spokesman said: “Replacement of the bridge would be a very long term aim of the county council and would need substantial additional funding to be found.”

  • Overnight closures of Cross Keys Bridge began this week. They’ll be needed tonight as well as May 9, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24 and 25. The bridge will be entirely closed to traffic from 7pm until 7am the following day on each of those dates - with the structure needing to be held open for the work.
  • The A16 is due to be shut from 7pm each night from now until May 13. On each occasion it reopens to traffic at 6am the following day. The closure is for resurfacing.
  • The A151 is set to be closed in Whaplode while overnight resurfacing work is carried out. The project is planned to start at High Road on Monday, May 16 with patching and resurfacing work due to take place. Lincolnshire County Council’s highways notice says that the closure will be in force between May 16 and May 28. The job is described as ‘night works’ - although the times for this have not yet been clarified. An official diversion route will advise motorists to use the A17 and A16 to avoid the works.

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