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A47 closed this weekend for major repair works on Saddlebow interchange in King's Lynn

PUBLISHED: 08:32 19 November 2017 | UPDATED: 19:11 19 November 2017

The A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: Archant

The A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: Archant

Archant

The A47 has been closed to allow major repairs to be carried out on a busy junction.

The A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: ArchantThe A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: Archant

The £3.1m work to repair two damaged bridges on the Saddlebow interchange in King’s Lynn began on October 23.

This weekend, one of the bridges carrying the A148 over the A47 had been lifted to dig out the damaged beams and remove the concrete.

In order to do this, Highways England have had to close the A47 in both directions beneath the bridges from Friday, November 17 until 6am on Monday, November 20.

This is one of eight planned weekend closures to carry out the work safely, which is due to finish in April 2018.

The A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: ArchantThe A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: Archant

A Highways England spokesman said the A47 will be closed again on the weekend of November 25 - 26, but that there are no more planned weekend closures until after the new year.

Rob Cook, framework director of Graham Construction, the contracting company in charge of the repair works, said the work is on schedule and could finish by March.

He added: “I live locally so I would like to see the work done sooner.

“The first few weeks we did a lot of investigation work and inspections to get planning in place.

The A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: ArchantThe A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: Archant

“This weekend has been a big road operation and a lot of work is happening tonight.
“We intend to do the work quicker and it is going pretty well. We’re using one crane but have another so we have a back up system as well.

“The aim is to possibly finish by March.”

Motorists heading eastbound are being directed towards the Hardwick roundabout, whilst westbound drivers are being diverted to the Pullover roundabout.

When asked about motorists’ concerns over traffic queues for the Pullover roundabout, Mr Cook assured them that they are looking into ways to minimise delays.

The A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: ArchantThe A47 beneath the Saddlebow interchange was closed in both directions for bridge repairs to be carried out. Picture: Archant

But he said putting in place a traffic light system on the roundabout would make matters worse.

Mr Cook added: “We are still looking into it but it would make the junction worse on the A17.”

The bridges are being repaired as part of a wider £18m package of work to maintain the A47 in Norfolk, which consists of around 70 different schemes.

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