Repairs to Bath Road, Cheltenham to finish by Saturday
ROADWORKS in one of Cheltenham's busiest roads will take until the end of the week to complete, but traders say the work is taking too long.
Traffic has been left in chaos after Bath Road was closed at its junction with the High Street two weeks ago after a sewer collapsed.
Repairs by Severn Trent could be finished by Saturday after more than two weeks of work.
But an angry trader says the repairs are not proceeding fast enough, despite assurances by Severn Trent that it has been working around the clock to fix the problem.
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Jay Rahman, who runs indian restaurant Prithvi, said: "Every time I go past the roadworks, it seems there is nobody there.
"When you drive along the motorways, you see people working 24/7, whether it is 6am or midnight.
"But there is never anybody around on Saturdays or Sundays and they are certainly not around after 5pm during the week."
But Severn Trent said it had been working as quickly as it can to fix the road.
Sarah-Jayne O'Kane, customer engagement officer, said: "Although the road is scheduled to be closed until Saturday, our engineers on site are working seven days a week to try to complete the work as soon as possible and to avoid any disruption to the Christmas shopping period."
The work has left the start of a traffic experiment elsewhere in the town with no confirmed date.
A trial switch-off of traffic lights along St Margaret's Road has been postponed until the repairs in Bath Road have been completed.
But Shire Hall has vowed it will still go ahead before the Christmas season starts and hopes to begin it next week.
Gloucestershire county council highways manager, Jason Humm, said: "Due to Severn Trent's ongoing emergency works in Bath Road, traffic in sections of the route which use the signals have been busier than we would want it to be before going ahead with the trial.
"It is important that the trial reflects normal traffic patterns to judge its success.
"We are confident that once the works are completed we will be able to go ahead with the trial."