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Kent Highways says use both lanes on approach to old Cowstead Corner roundabout after questions raised by MP Gordon Henderson

By Lewis Dyson

It’s an issue which divides motorists heading to the east end of the Island from the Sheppey Crossing.

Should you stay to the left on the approach to the old Cowstead Corner roundabout and leave the right-hand side clear for vehicles heading to Elmley and Iwade or is it OK to use both?

According to Kent Highways the system was designed to allow two vehicles to circulate side by side and then merge when it goes down to one on Lower Road in a "filter-in" system.

It says leaving the right lane clear would reduce the capacity of the roundabout.

Views of roundabout and signage at Cowstead Corner
Views of roundabout and signage at Cowstead Corner

MP Gordon Henderson sought clarification after complaints about traffic at the junction during peak times lead to confusion and even anger at people trying to move in from the right.

He said he suggested putting up a sign or road markings telling drivers it is a filter-in system but was told by Kent Highways funding for such schemes is limited.

Mr Henderson said: “I have pointed out to Kent Highways that very few Islanders know about this filter in system and they have always assumed that the inside lane was for vehicles going to Minster and Eastchurch and the outside lane was for Iwade and Elmley.

“This often leads to those in the inside lane thinking those in the outside lane are pushing in.”

He added: “I will keep pressing for better signage.”

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