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Farmers Roundabout traffic lights start next week

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WORK to alter the layout of Melksham’s Farmers Roundabout on the A350, is on schedule to be completed this month – and the new traffic light control system will become active next week.

Contractors Dyer & Butler say that no exact date has been set for the ‘switch-on’ of the traffic lights – which will be located on both the A350 in both directions and the A3102 Bradford Road – but drivers will be informed in advance via various messaging systems in the area.

The changes to the roundabout, first announced in 2016, have been widely criticised by the community. Many residents have predicted that the new signalling system will only make traffic worse in the area, despite Wiltshire Council’s assurance that it will ‘improve the overall traffic flow and reduce queues and delays’.  

Work began on the roundabout in early February. Drivers have endured lane closures during off-peak hours and road closures at night, with many describing the works as ‘chaos’.

A spokesperson for Dyer & Butler told Melksham News, “Dyer & Butler are pleased to advise that we have kept to a very tight works schedule and continue to remain on target for the scheme to be substantially completed during October. 

“During our works we have encountered unchartered utility services and difficult ground conditions that has required our intended works programme to be rescheduled, whilst maintaining the major challenge and logistical difficulties of managing the high volumes of traffic moving throughout our works.  However despite these challenges we are very proud to have kept to our tight works schedules.

“The new traffic light control systems are planned to become active in the week commencing Monday 14th October with the exact date of the switch on being advised to motorists in advance, using our variable messaging systems in and around Farmers Roundabout.

“Dyer & Butler have appreciated the full support of Wiltshire Council and their design team throughout the Farmers Roundabout improvement scheme works and it is only through working together that we have ensured positive outcomes to the issues we have faced.  

“High levels of strategic and local planning has gone in to managing works around peak traffic flow times and also maximising the output of the workforce, especially during the necessary periods of night works. This has allowed us to reduce the disruption to those needing to use Farmers Roundabout, including the residents and businesses adjacent to the scheme.

“Dyer & Butler have employed a dedicated communications specialist to liaise with residents and businesses, endeavouring to keep all stakeholders fully informed throughout the scheme build with regular news letters, community liaison efforts and our commitment to listening and taking action wherever we can.

“Dyer & Butler and Wiltshire Council would also like to thank the children and teachers of The Manor School, Melksham, for their support and enthusiastic involvement in our road sign artwork design competition.  We have all enjoyed this project and believe that road safety for site workers, road users and pedestrians including the school children has benefitted from this opportunity.”

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