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A11 roadworks could impact Diss as motorists find alternative routes

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A south Norfolk town is facing likely disruption as a result of a major road project getting under way – even though it is around 15 miles from the works.

Diss is expected to see an increase of traffic as a result of work being carried out on the A11, just south of Norwich, as motorists avoid the prospect of tailbacks and seek alternative routes through the county.

Preparatory work began this month near Wymondham, where the bypass is being resurfaced as part of a scheme that is due to last until June 2023.

Graham Minshull, Ward councillor for Diss and Roydon.
Graham Minshull, Ward councillor for Diss and Roydon.

By then, a separate project may have started to upgrade the nearby Thickthorn roundabout which is expected to last until 2025.

People living in Wymondham and Hethersett have already reported heavy traffic through their communities as a result of the work and the effects are expected to be felt as far away as Diss.

The town is on the A1066, which, along with the A140, is the official ‘dispersal route’ for motorists travelling between the A47 and the A11 near Thetford, to avoid the roadworks.

Graham Minshull, Ward councillor for Diss and Roydon, said: “We are going to have a series of road works in Diss as well – it could be quite the summer for the town.

“There will be major works in Diss and resurfacing up at Roydon and the long-awaited traffic light at the Shell garage.

“It will be early summer when we get the holiday traffic coming through that could be the busiest period when people head to Yarmouth.

“The problem is there is no perfect time to do these roadworks.”

Clayton Hudson, a councillor covering communities along the route said he expected disruption but the work was needed.

He said: “The A11 and Thickthorn works are absolutely required, there isn’t really any other option.

“It will bring some disruption to the A140 but I welcome the works being done.

“Sometimes we have got to take a little bit of pain to get long term gain. Unfortunately there’s no real alternative.

“For people heading to London I think it would be better to go along the A140 and then the A143, which is a good route already for articulated lorries and it avoids Diss town centre.”

The Thickthorn project is still awaiting approval from transport secretary Grant Shapps.