Hambledon Parish Council has been in regular contact with gas supplier SGN, which is responsible for the work currently being undertaken by contractors to upgrade mains at Lane End.
This work has resulted in the road being closed to all traffic for a period of 12 weeks. A diversion of approximately three miles is required for those who would usually enter or exit Hambledon village at Lane End.
The parish council is aware of the inconvenience this is causing and has been pressing SGN to see if traffic light control could allow Lane End to reopen. SGN has said that on grounds of safety and to ensure compliance with Covid-19 regulations, this is not possible.
Here Robin McKeith, parish councillor responsible for maintenance and highways issues, explains the latest situation.
The upgrade of the gas main on Lane End commenced on 4th January. The Parish Council has since had a conference call, together with numerous telephone calls and email exchanges, with SGN.
It has been told that progress is currently ahead of plan. Should there be any delays the parish council will be made aware.
The possibility of reopening one side of the road, under traffic light control, has been raised. However, SGN consider this unsuitable. The narrow road would not allow the safe passage of pedestrians and vehicles. The requirement is to have a minimum running lane of 3.25M for HGV and LGV and a 0.5M safety zone, and this has been deemed unachievable at this location.
A scheme that supports small local businesses which suffer a genuine loss of trade because of the work is available from the SGN website: https://www.sgn.co.uk/help-and-advice/customer-service/compensation
In case anyone in the community would like a little more information about the work being carried out, SGN have provided a generic link to a video to explain the replacement work in general terms, here: https://sgn.co.uk/our-gas-works/working-your-street and have provided a telephone number for any queries: 0800 912 1700
The Parish Council will continue to request SGN review this situation regularly to minimise inconvenience to the local residents and to complete the works ahead of schedule.
For further information on the gas mains work, please look at previous news stories on this website.