New road dug up for gas work

Just days after a village celebrated the end of a 15-week roadwork scheme the newly-laid surface has been dug up again in a move branded “ridiculous.”Residents and motorists were thrilled as the deadline for repair work on the A1075 at Shipdham approached, having been plagued with almost four months of roadworks and a diversion route of around 30 miles.

Just days after a village celebrated the end of a 15-week roadwork scheme the newly-laid surface has been dug up again in a move branded “ridiculous.”

Residents and motorists were thrilled as the deadline for repair work on the A1075 at Shipdham approached, having been plagued with almost four months of roadworks and a diversion route of around 30 miles.

But people barely had any time to admire the fresh road surface before a utility company came along and dug it up again.

Paul Hewett, Breckland councillor for the area, said: “It's extremely disappointing. Shops, businesses and residents have had to put up with so much.

“They were promised a great road. Then a few days later a company has come along and dug it up again. It's ridiculous.”

Government guidelines state that where possible all utility companies work together to avoid unnecessary disruption to the public, and Norfolk County Council, responsible for the scheme, duly issued an advance notice.

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But, on September 13, just two days before work was due to finish, the council was contacted by two utility companies asking to do repairs on the road.

And while one, EDF Energy, managed to complete the work the next day before resurfacing had finished, National Grid Gas turned up on September 18 and began work.

Melanie Willis, planning and transportation communication officer for the council, said: “Obviously we are disappointed this happened.

“We issue advance warning notices and companies know we have a scheme of summer repair work. This particular project had been carrying on for a long time.

“We were contacted two days before it was due to finish by two companies. One managed to get the work done and finished while we were still there. Unfortunately the other did not. It is a shame and we will be going back to check the road is in the high standard we left it.

“Obviously we try our hardest to co-ordinate works like this but we cannot always guarantee it.”

A spokesperson for the contractor, Fulcrum Connections, said: “We apologise for any inconvenience caused to local residents. We always try to co-ordinate our works with those of local authorities or other utilities, however, this is not always possible owing to customer requirements.”

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