Drivers warned of major delays as details of Sutton Bridge road repairs revealed
Motorists have been warned there will be "significant disruption" when repairs to one of the key routes in and out of West Norfolk begin next month.
Officials have today confirmed the schedule for work on the A17 Cross Keys Bridge at Sutton Bridge, after community leaders warned of several weeks of chaos ahead.
Around £100,000 is to be spent on resurfacing the bridge.
And, despite two-way working on a single lane, Lincolnshire County Council is advising drivers to avoid the "significant disruption and severe delays" and divert via Wisbech while the work takes place.
Karen Cassar, the authority's assistant director for highways, said: "It's vital we make these repairs to ensure the bridge remains safe for people to use.
"It is over 10 years since the surface of the bridge was last replaced, and over that time it has worn down due to the high volumes of cars and HGVs using the route.
"We now need to put a new surface down to ensure the road can be used safely for years to come.
"The investment is around £100,000 and will ensure the bridge has the latest and best possible skid resistant specialist surface."
As well as disruption from roadworks, the swing bridge will remain open to marine traffic - and, if it swings to allow boats to pass along the Nene, HGVs and cars will come to a standstill as they normally do.
The council says there will be two periods of scheduled works on the bridge - the first for two so far unspecified days during the week starting Monday, September 2 and the next for four weeks starting during the week commencing Monday, September 23.
The authority says work will be carried out both times with "back to back shifts".
The council says the two-day scheme will allow it to prepare for and trial the new surface before the main scheme later in the month, and also to see if its traffic management is effective.
Ms Cassar said: "In preparation for these works, we've spoken to local residents, businesses and bus services about the project - and they preferred to have the bridge open to two way traffic under traffic lights, in addition to a diversion route.
"We realise there will be significant disruption and severe delays in the area while the work is carried out, and would advise people to use the diversion route.
"We'd like to reassure residents that will do all we can to reduce the disruption, and get the work completed as quickly as possible."