NEW roadworks on a busy route connecting Colchester and Tendring are to continue for more than a year, highways bosses have confirmed.

Preparation works for a new rapid transit lane started in Clingoe Hill on Monday and will continue until May before the main construction works start later in the year.

Essex Highways hasn’t previously said how long the scheme will take to complete, but when asked by the Gazette this week, a spokesman said the works are due to end in around May next year.

Essex County Council said: “The advanced works will see the removal of small amounts of vegetation on the footprint of the scheme and the essential diversion of utilities.

“These works are being undertaken now ahead of bird nesting season with the main works themselves not due to get underway until the summer, subject to a contractor being appointed.

“We anticipate the overall programme of works will be around 16 months, however this will be determined when the contractor has been appointed. Further detail on the programme and works sequencing will then be available.”

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Scheme - Clingoe Hill in ColchesterScheme - Clingoe Hill in Colchester (Image: Google)

County councillor Mark Cory previously criticised the authority for failing to give residents enough notice of the new roadworks.

The council responded: “Local members [of the council] have been made aware of the works, and we have previously written to all households and businesses in the immediate area to inform them of various survey work being undertaken, directing them to view details on the website at

“Further engagement with members and residents is planned and they will be kept up to date as the scheme progresses.”

'Very upset'

It added there will be “some traffic management and lane closures” during the current works which will be done at night “wherever possible”.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Frustrated - Wivenhoe councillor Mark CoryFrustrated - Wivenhoe councillor Mark Cory

Colchester resident Laura Bull is “very upset” about the impact 16 months of roadworks will have on her weekly journey to make dinner for her grandad in Clacton.

“Currently, I leave at lunchtime it’s a 20-minute journey but if I leave at 4pm, because of all the traffic coming from the Hythe it takes me an hour to get to Clacton,” she said.

“The prospect of more works on that route is not ideal and could make that journey even more hideous. It could make it more like an hour and a half.”

Mr Cory, who is also the deputy leader of Colchester Council, fears the Clingoe Hill project will overrun and come in overbudget.

He said: “In the short term I’m concerned about the disruption these plans will cause and the likely delays. I hope Essex County Council can control them and ensure they’re not delayed but we will wait and see.”