Frustration over ‘absentee workmen’

Clare Road, Waringstown. INLM35-217.
Clare Road, Waringstown. INLM35-217.

Residents at Waringstown’s Clare Road are expressing their frustration over the roadworks currently taking place there - or more accurately not taking place!

Last week residents woke up to a 15mph speed limit imposed as the road was layered in gravel in advance of resurfacing work - and that, it’s claimed, was the last time a workman was seen.

Indeed at one stage the road was closed with residents surprised that they had received no notification.

One resident told the ‘MAIL’: “It all started last Thursday or Friday with the gravel laid; within a couple of days my car was covered in a layer of grey grit, had it washed on Saturday and it was as bad as ever again a couple of days later.

“What’s even more frustrating, I’m up and down the road twice a day and I have yet to see anyone actually working, there’s not even a van in sight.”

The render is also causing issues for motorcyclists, as one pointed out, “The surface render poses a real danger for anyone on a motorcycle - you can feel the bike slipping and sliding under you.”

Adding to that frustration came a surprise and brief road closure on Friday last - with the Banbridge Road already closed and some using the Clare Road as a diversion. The Banbridge Road has been closed for a couple of weeks for resurfacing.

That diversion has also caused issues for some, particularly the large electronic billboard at the Flush Place roundabout, with drivers left thinking they could not get to Waringstown along the Banbridge Road - even though the road is closed on the far side of the village. The road was closed for a couple of days before the work started but once work began it has progressed relatively quickly.

Transport NI said: “Clare Road was surfaced last Thursday/Friday using bitumen macadam and chippings in order to protect the relatively expensive surface material and increase its longevity. The bitumen acts as a sealer to prevent the ingress of water and the chippings provide skid resistance to vehicles. Since these are mobile works, dependent on a number of factors such as the weather and road surface temperatures, formal road closures are not normally appropriate. Clare Road was closed for a few hours only while the works were completed.”

When selecting a diversion route, Transport NI are required to divert traffic to a road with a similar route classification (basically so that two articulated lorries can pass) the chosen route was considered to be the most appropriate in this case. Resurfacing works are complete and the road is now open to traffic.”