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Home   Ashford   News   Article

Thousands of motorists caught in tailbacks around Drovers and Matalan roundabouts in Ashford on Tuesday evening

04 December 2013

Ashford town centre was hit by traffic gridlock last night.

The Drovers, Tank and Matalan roundabouts and town centre were at a standstill from late afternoon until late into the evening.
 
It is understood the main cause of the problem was a burst water main in Chart Road, close to Matalan, where two-way temporary traffic lights were introduced while workmen carried out repairs.
Stock picture of traffic
 
The knock-on effect was massive queues in Chart Road, Brookfield Road, getting onto and off the Godinton Park estate and all around the Matalan, Tank and Drovers roundabouts.
Drivers were taking 45 minutes to get from the junction 9 turn-off on the M20 to Godinton Park.
 
At one point lorry drivers stuck on the Drovers roundabout got out of their cabs in a bid to control traffic and get things moving.
 
Among those caught up in the jams was Kentish Express reporter Tricia Jamieson.
 
"I had to turn round three times before I could get out of Ashford," she said.
 
"I was trying to get onto the Drovers roundabout from Simone Weil Avenue, but could see the roundabout was at a standstill from quite a way away.
 
"My eventual destination was the M20, so I turned round outside the Ashford International, intending to drive through town to junction 10. 
 
"But after sitting at traffic lights watching them change three times before I got through, and then coming to a standstill again in Canterbury Road, I again turned round thinking Drovers might have cleared.
 
"No such luck. Another spin round at Ashford International and I headed off towards Canterbury along the A28, eventually taking the turning down to junction 10.
 
"Once I got a few hundred yards away from the gridlocked area, the traffic was fine and I sailed through.
 
"There must have been hundreds of motorists caught up in it." 
 
A South East Water spokesman has apologised for the disruption and thanked drivers for their patience. 
 
However, they said the temporary traffic lights will be back in Chart Road from 7pm today while the company finishes off the work. 

Were you caught in the chaos? Leave a comment below.

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