Shropshire residents hit by rush hour traffic 'chaos' on first day of full A41 closure
A full closure of the busy A41 has brought "absolute chaos" to communities in rural Shropshire with residents tormented by "horrendous" diverted traffic.
Major improvement works are taking place on the A41 from the Forton roundabout north of Newport up to Telford and Wrekin’s northern Shropshire boundary near Hinstock.
The full 24-hour closure from today is expected to be in place through to September 3. The planned diversion points drivers towards the A442, through Cold Hatton and Hortonwood.
With a maze of narrow country lanes criss-crossing through the communities surrounding the busy A-road, residents have been raising concerns about drivers seeking a shortcut since the announcement.
Earlier this month, Newport town and borough councillor Tim Nelson pleaded with drivers to follow the 29-mile diversion, to avoid jamming up the back lanes.
But Monday proved the predictions true for Sambrook resident Keith Newton, who said rush hour brought the chaos they expected.
He said: "It was absolute chaos - what inevitably happened is the whole thing got jammed up.
"When one vehicle stops, they all stop. The road looks like an obvious alternative route, but it's just too narrow.
"Lorries can't get down here, and they can't turn around because there are cars behind them.
"We have a particular problem that we have a stone wall at the front, and it always gets knocked down whenever there is an A41 closure.
"Our neighbours opposite had their wall knocked down months ago and aren't even bothering to rebuild it anymore - there's no point."
Just down the road, residents took to the usually quiet country lane to plead with drivers to slow down.
Pickstock resident Julia Price said: "The traffic this morning has been unbelievable, absolutely horrendous. I understand people have to get to work but the speed that some people have been coming down here - it's a single-track road.
"We've had people swearing at us when we've asked them to slow down. We have children and animals here. There have been head-on accidents on this road on a normal day.
"I understand that people have got to get to work, but the speeds are going to kill someone."