ROADS in Christchurch were gridlocked on Monday with residents expressing anger towards the council for a lack of notice with the closures.

The council has chosen this time to resurface the roads because contractors have only recently returned from furlough and traffic levels are “generally lower” than they would usually be.

But residents slammed the planning of roadworks yesterday, with the town centre already closed off due to the popular Monday Market.

A BCP Council spokesperson said: “Due to lockdown, many contractors and suppliers furloughed their staff and the council’s operations section was assigned to supporting critical services at that time.

“The works are being undertaken now as resources have been confirmed, and the traffic levels during the school holidays are generally lower and there is usually less disruption.

“We understand the frustration of the busy roads which coincided with the market yesterday and apologise for the inconvenience caused.

“However, by completing the work this week before lockdown is fully lifted, it will avoid further congestion when schools return to their normal operation.”

BCP Council started resurfacing works at Willow Drive on Monday August 10. Although the works will last for four days, Willow Drive will reopen in the evenings from 6pm to 7am.

Yet, pictures shared on social media showed Wick Lane, Stour Road, Sopers Lane and surroundings roads blocked with cars due to a road closure in Willow Drive.

The resurfacing starts at Stour Road roundabout, but does not include the junction at Sopers Lane, which will remain open.

There is currently a diversion in place around Stour Road, A35 Barrack Road and Fountain Road roundabout.