Drivers forced to drive 47 miles in Britain's longest road diversion

Drivers forced to drive 47 miles in Britain's longest road diversionPA

Drivers are being diverted 47 miles out of their way because of roadworks on a small stretch of road in Somerset.

For the next eight days, anyone who needs to travel through the town of Highbridge will be sent on "Britain's longest diversion" in order to allow the council to resurface a stretch of road just 740 yards long.

Instead of the usual 30-second trip, the massive diversion will tak two hours to drive, directing motorists through neighbouring towns including Glasontbury, Axbridge and East Brent.

A spokesman for the council told BBC News: "We don't believe anyone will use the formal 47-mile round trip but legally we need to have it in place."

Town councillor Phil Harvey told local news site burnham-on-sea.com: "This has to qualify as the UK's longest-ever diversion route. It is just laughable that Somerset County Council really expects motorists to drive almost 50 miles across the region to avoid a few hundred metres of road here. There are plenty of shorter, more sensible local routes to take."

The County Council has apologised for any inconvenience caused by the roadworks.

But the apology will do little to appease frustrated drivers.

Last year, a study found that Britain has the worst traffic jams in Europe. A total of 16 British towns featured on the list of the 50 most gridlocked cities in europe.

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