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Kent weather: Traffic chaos as heatwave continues and sun seekers head to beaches

Hour-long delays and queues of 18 miles faced sun seekers flocking to beaches in Kent.

There were massive queues on Romney Marsh as families lined up to try and get onto the sand, while tailbacks of 18 miles were reported on the coast-bound M2.

KMTV report on the traffic chaos

The delays continued this evening, with heavier than normal traffic reported on the London-bound M2 between Junction 7 for Faversham and Junction 5 at Sittingbourne.

There were also queues on the A28 Canterbury Road and Marine Drive in Margate and on the road through Whitstable town centre, all put down to people heading for the beaches.

Earlier, the situation was so bad in neighbouring Camber Sands that police were stopping tourists from entering the area.

The East Sussex beach's local council, Rother District Council, also closed all the car parks after they filled up this morning.

A spokesman said Camber Sands car parks were full and closed and a police road closure was in place. "Do not travel to Camber," they added.

The scene in Lydd this afternoon
The scene in Lydd this afternoon

This was having knock-on effects on the Marsh as motorists were being forced to stop and turn around in the Lydd area.

It was understood a road closure was being put in place near the Army camp in Lydd.

KMTV's Kristina Curtis described the scene in Lydd as "absolute chaos".

She said: "They have closed off Jury's Gap Road, but everyone is just parking on a communial space near by and walking down to Camber.

"It must be an hour's walk at the very least!"

KMTV's Kristina Curtis described the situation as 'chaos'
KMTV's Kristina Curtis described the situation as 'chaos'

This afternoon, the queues on the M2 were stretching back between Junction 3 and Junction 7, a distance of more than 18 miles.

The tailbacks resulted in delays of nearly an hour on the motorway, while the heavy traffic was causing further tailbacks on the A299 coast-bound at Boughton Under Blean.

The problems were exacerbated by a collision which partly blocked the coast-bound carriageway around Junction 5 for Sittingbourne, Sheppey and Maidstone - and worsened still when there was an accident in a similar spot in the opposite direction.

The A28 was also facing huge delays in both directions, with queues springing up in Margate, Birchington, and Chartham.

Elsewhere, there were large delays on the A2070 at Hamstreet and the A20 Townwall street in Dover.

The situation was also affecting public transport services as far away as Folkestone

A Stagecoach spokesperson said that due to congestion and inconsiderate parking in Camber there would be no buses running through there until further notice. "We apologise for the inconvenience," they added.

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Read more: All the latest news from Romney Marsh

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