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Reopening of Beaminster Tunnel delayed as members voice disappointment
1:30pm Wednesday 20th February 2013 in News
COMMUNITY members have voiced disappointment at a three to five-week delay to the reopening of the Beaminster Tunnel.
The tunnel on the A3066, which was due to reopen in May, has been shut since July last year when a landslip crushed a passing car, killing two people inside.
Motorists have had to follow a diversion to access Beaminster from south Somerset.
Dorset County Council says delays in the design work, testing and negotiations with landowners have meant it has not been possible to start the soil nailing as programmed.
Councillor Peter Finney, cabinet member for highways and transportation, said: “This is devastating news for the community, and it is certainly not what we had foreseen happening.
“The design process is complex and does take time. It’s extremely important that we get it right.
“We are doing as much other work on site as we can – including improving the drainage – and we will re-jig parts of the programme where possible to keep the work moving.”
Beaminster county councillor Rebecca Knox said: “The delay is very disappointing for all of us.”
Butcher Nick Tett, of the town’s Nick Tett Butchers, said he ‘expected’ a delay.