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Villages facing three months of road closures to stop wastewater overflows in Somerset

A £450,000 scheme of works is set to reduce the amount of wastewater being released into waterways in Somerset villages – with a series of road closures in place over nearly three months.

Wessex Water has announced it is carrying out a series of works to replace damaged sections of pipes, reaching around a mile in length.

It is hoped the work will reduce the risk of sewer flooding and untreated wastewater being released into streams and rivers.

The work, which is set to begin at the end of February, will take place in and around the villages of Keinton Mandeville, Charlton Mackrell, Charlton Adam and Kingsdon.

Wessex Water teams will move between more than 40 sites, relining and sealing the pipes to stop groundwater getting in, as well as preventing foul water from escaping.

The work is set to be finished by the middle of May.

It comes after national outcry over the amount of sewage and wastewater being pumped into UK waterways.

Surfers Against Sewage said there were more than 399,000 discharges f raw sewage into UK waterways in 2022.

Project manager for Wessex Water, Mark Floyd, said: “This relining work follows our investigations of the network in the area, which revealed that some sections of pipes were damaged and using ‘no-dig’ techniques means we can complete the work more quickly and with less disruption than replacing pipes in a conventional manner.

“By sealing these pipes we can help to protect the environment from excess water getting into the system, which can increase the risk of flooding of homes and businesses or storm overflows operating automatically.

“The nature of the work and width of some rural roads means we will need to close them in phases for short periods to get this essential work done, but we’re writing directly to customers and businesses locally to inform them well in advance about this work.

“We’re also working closely with village authorities and others to raise awareness of this project and we’ll be working hard to ensure it is safely finished as quickly as possible.”

The relining work gets underway on Monday, February 26, and will pause over the Easter holiday weekend before continuing until Friday, May 10.

Drain pipes are being replaced or resealed by Wessex Water

Drain pipes are being replaced or resealed by Wessex Water

The timetable of roadworks and road closures in Somerset is:

Monday, February 26 – Friday, March 1: Top Road in Charlton Adam will be closed to through traffic near the junction with Broad Street. A short diversion, using Broad Street, High Street, George Street and Church Hill will be in place.

Monday, March 4 – Friday, March 8: Queen Street, Keinton Mandeville, will be closed to through traffic, with three-way lights also in operation on High Street. A diversion, using Queen Street, Combe Lane, Broadway, the A37 and B3153 will be in operation.

Monday, March 11 – Friday, March 22: Church Street, Keinton Mandeville will be closed to through traffic near the junction with Queen Street. A diversion, using Church Street, Combe Lane, Broadway, the A37 and Common Lane will be in operation.

Monday, March 25 – Thursday, March 28: Broad Street, Charlton Adam will be closed to through traffic near the junction with Top Road. A diversion, using Top Road, Church Hill, George Street and High Street will be in operation.

Tuesday, April 2 – Friday, April 5: High Street, Charlton Adam will be closed to through traffic. A diversion, using Broad Street, Top Road, Church Hill and George Street will be in operation.

Monday, April 8 – Friday, April 12: Broadway Road, Charlton Adam will be closed to through traffic near the Fox & Hounds pub. A diversion, using Broadway, Broad Street, Top Road, Collins Lane, Ilchester Road, Primrose Hill, Tout Lane and the A37 will be in operation.

Monday, April 15 – Friday, April 19: Mow Barton Road, Kingsdon, will be closed between the junction with Middle Street and the junction with Lower Road. A diversion, using Lower Road, Lotment Hill and Middle Street will be in place.

Monday, April 22 – Friday, May 3: Mill Lane/Hillway, Charlton Mackrell will be closed to through traffic just north of the railway bridge. A diversion, using Hillway, Ilchester Road, Bonfire Lane and Hill Lane will be in operation.

Tuesday, May 7: Church Street, Keinton Mandeville will be closed to through traffic. A diversion, using Church Street, Combe Lane, Broadway, the A37 and Common Lane will be in operation.

Wednesday, May 8 – Friday, May 10: Broad Street, Charlton Adam will be closed to through traffic. A diversion, using Top Road, Church Hill, George Street and High Street will be in operation.

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