Published: 12:36, 11 May 2022
| Updated: 15:46, 11 May 2022
A 12-mile stretch of the M2 will be closed all weekend, it has now been confirmed.
In a double blow for motorists, the 58-hour closure coincides with the continuation of Operation Brock on the coastbound M20.
The closure comes into force at 8pm on Friday and is to remain in place throughout all of Saturday and Sunday.
Work will conclude during the night and the M2 will reopen at 6am Monday.
While the coastbound route is to be completely closed, the motorway will remain open in the opposite direction, on the London-bound side.
National Highways is enforcing the closure in order to carry out bridge repair works on the stretch between Sittingbourne and Faversham.
This weekend will mark the first of six weekend closures.
Last month, a traffic order issued by National Highways suggested the work would take place for three consecutive weekends in May, followed by another three in July.
However, after the planned closure was pushed back last week, it is not yet known when the next work will be carried out.
With the M2 shut all weekend from Friday, motorists heading coastbound will need to head down the M20.
Yet the 15-mile stretch between Junction 8 for Maidstone and Junction 9 for Ashford still has a 50mph limit and drivers have to make their way through a contraflow.
The Kent Resilience Forum (KRF) confirmed yesterday that the traffic management system will have to continue until at least next Tuesday.
Despite one P&O Ferries ship returning to service, and port traffic running smoothly, highways bosses say the contraflow is still required.
"Brock controls continue to be used on the motorway to manage the flow of lorries heading across the Channel via Dover and Eurotunnel," a Kent County Council spokesman said.
"KRF partners, including National Highways, Kent Police and Kent County Council, are very aware of the impact the M20 contraflow has on local residents and so once again would like to assure everyone that today’s decision was not taken lightly.
"The next review of the Brock traffic management scheme will take place on, or around, next Tuesday."
Motorists avoiding the M2 coastbound closure should be aware you cannot access the M20 coastbound at Junction 8.