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A14 works in Bury St Edmunds spark concerns as traffic diverted through Great Barton, Ixworth, Stanton and Rickinghall





Motorists are outraged over an ‘unacceptable’ A14 diversion route taking overnight traffic through Suffolk villages on pothole-ridden roads.

A project to resurface the eastbound carriageway from junction 43, Bury St Edmunds St Saviours interchange, to junction 47a, Woolpit, has been met with major concerns.

The overnight works started on Monday, with the road closed from 8pm to 6am every weeknight until June while diverting drivers on a 40-mile trek through Great Barton, Ixworth, Stanton and Rickinghall.

The diversion route is in place on weeknights from 8pm to 6pm until June. Picture: National Highways
The diversion route is in place on weeknights from 8pm to 6pm until June. Picture: National Highways

Zee Battersby said: “It took me 50 minutes to do an eight-minute journey on to the A14. It is unacceptable.

“The roads on the diversion route just aren’t fit for purpose anymore and it will make the pothole situation so much worse.”

Taz Clarke said: “They need to concentrate on resurfacing the minor roads which are more pothole than Tarmac, rather than resurfacing a road which is in excellent condition in comparison.”

The A14 from Bury St Edmunds to Woolpit has been closed overnight all week for a major resurfacing project. Picture: Google Maps
The A14 from Bury St Edmunds to Woolpit has been closed overnight all week for a major resurfacing project. Picture: Google Maps

Despite the issues raised, others argue the improvements would be worth the inconvenience, given the necessity of repairing the busy route used by thousands every day.

Peter Dow, Elmswell Parish Council clerk, said people in his community had come to terms with the works as he had received very little negative feedback from residents.

Mr Dow also praised National Highways for being open about the plans and for holding multiple public information events for consultation.

He said: “We don't think it's all that terrible – it's got to happen.

“There's an unfortunate coming together of both road schemes with the A14 and A1088 but we have become, in a way, so used to the traffic controls in place and it has been quite effective.”

The 40-mile diversion route takes motorists along the A143 to Scole, then south on the A140 to rejoin the A14 at junction 51 in Needham Market.

Once the project is complete drivers should benefit from a safer, smooth road surface.

However Maggie Dunn, chair of Great Barton Parish Council, said the increased amount of traffic driving through the village would have a large impact on already damaged roads.

“Our roads are simply not built for this,” she said. “The A14 can’t even withstand the lorries, that’s why it’s being resurfaced, let alone our narrow B roads.

“The more the road is closed, the worse the potholes are going to get. The rural roads in Suffolk are already atrocious.”

The roadworks will include the addition of new traffic signs, road markings and road studs, with phase two of the project planned for late autumn.

National Highways was approached for comment.