A CONTROVERSIAL scheme to put traffic lights on a busy road in Christchurch is to go-ahead despite protests from residents and councillors.

Dorset County Council has confirmed the £140,000 project on Stony Lane in Burton will start on March 24 and last for four weeks.

The road has suffered from major flooding since December and was completely closed for more than a week last month.

Under the banner of the Three Towns Travel scheme they are proposing to put traffic lights either side of the railway bridge, in effect making traffic flow one-way.

The shared footpath will then be widened to accommodate disability scooter users and parents with buggies as well as cyclists.

A spokesperson for the council said the signals will be set-up so traffic does not tail back to Stony Lane roundabout.

They added: “During construction the road will be closed at nights from March 31 between 7pm and 6am. Outside of these hours and at weekends two-way temporary signals will be deployed.”

But Dorset County councillor for Burton and Grange ward, David Jones, who along with Burton Parish Council is in opposition to the scheme, said: “This will not provide any benefit to the motorists at all.

“Seeing the chaos that resulted from the closure of the road under the railway bridge recently, they need to listen to local people. I can’t accept it will be worth it – in both a financial sense and disruption.”

Last year, the scheme was postponed to allow councillors to see the result of the Morrisons scheme, which would have spent £1million on improvements to Stony Lane roundabout.

The supermarket was turned down last month.

n Plans for a new cycleway in Somerford have also been amended, with plans for a dedicated route thrown out.

Under the Three Towns Travel, Dorset County Council proposed a dedicated shared footpath and cycleway between Somer-ford Road and the service road.

Instead, following req-uests from Cllr David Jones, they are proceeding with option B – a signed route along the service road.

The original scheme was to cost £245,000 – with the revised plans understood to be “much reduced”.

Cllr Jones said he was “delighted” by the decision but still thought the work was a waste of money.