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1:15pm on Saturday, 27th January, 2007:

Colchester Chaos


It's not a good idea to visit Colchester by road this weekend. The main arterial road to east Anglia, the A12, is being diverted through the town. In the past, when this has happened as a result of accidents, it has been a lava flow impossible to cross. Trying to get from one side of Colchester to the other was pointless. If it happened while I was at university, I'd have a terrible problem getting home.

This time, though, it's not caused by an accident, it's deliberate. The A12 is being closed to demolish a bridge. Now although ordinarily I might be grumpy about its taking 2 days to demolish a bridge (if it needs demolishing, surely it should be so shaky as to come down fairly easily?), but in this case the bridge in question is the one from West Bergholt to Colchester, which is long overdue for replacement. I don't know how long it will be before they rebuild it, but at least they're taking it down at last.

When I went to the supermarket, I drove over the A12 and saw stationary traffice stretching off into the far distance as the consequences of compressing a three-lane highway into a single-lane, roundabout-ridden road came to their inevitable fruition. I was fairly smirkful of this, until I tried to turn into the lane leading to our house and found myself unable to cross the stream of traffic that was suddenly using West Bergholt as a rat run.

So, something to be grumpy about eventually, anyway.

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Copyright © 2007 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).