Two-way traffic to return along full length of Gipsy Patch Lane in late April

Photo of a railway bridge with single file traffic passing beneath it.
Gipsy Patch Lane railway bridge, viewed from the west in March 2022.

Two-way traffic is set to return along the full length of Gipsy Patch Lane for the first time in more than two years. But ahead of this, a two-week full closure of the road east of the bridge is needed to carry out resurfacing work.

The road linking Little Stoke with the A38 has been subject to full closures and traffic management restrictions since June 2019, to allow the replacement of a narrow Victorian-era railway bridge and road widening works to create space for new bus lanes.

The work has included improvements to pedestrian and cycling facilities and is part of the Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension (CPME) scheme, which will help to reduce congestion and improve journey times for all road users.

South Gloucestershire Council, which has overall control of the project, says the CPME scheme will provide a new quick, reliable public transport system between Bristol Parkway Station and the Mall at Cribbs Causeway and offer a realistic alternative to travelling by car.

The CPME scheme is funded by the West of England Combined Authority and by the West of England Local Enterprise Partnership through the Local Growth Fund.

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When Gipsy Patch Lane was closed at the railway bridge on 5th March 2020, it was estimated that the full closure would last for eight months. However, work on the CPME scheme has been delayed due to several issues, including the Covid-19 pandemic, the new railway bridge getting stuck in soft ground as it was being moved into position, a redesign of the drainage system under the bridge, and delays in the delivery of drainage pumps.

Passage under the bridge has been possible for pedestrians and cyclists since December 2020.

Some relief for motorists came in September 2021 when the road under the bridge was reopened one-way (westbound only) – ten months later than originally planned.

The pumps for the pumping chamber that is buried deep in the road underneath the bridge have only recently been installed following delivery from the manufacturer. Final commissioning of the drainage system was due to take place in mid-March, allowing removal of the temporary pumps and dismantling of the Alun Griffiths compound underneath the bridge.

Full reopening plan

To enable Gipsy Patch Lane to be reopened to two-way traffic, resurfacing work will need to take place over the Easter period. From 8pm on Friday 8th April until 6am on Monday 25th April, Gipsy Patch Lane will be closed to all traffic between its junction with Little Stoke Lane and the entrance to Pegasus Park.

During the resurfacing work all side road junctions along Gipsy Patch Lane that fall within the closure will also need to be closed to traffic. This includes the junctions for Station Road, Gifford Crescent, the service roads, Smithcourt Drive and Bush Avenue. Pedestrians and cyclists will still be able to use the shared use path along Gipsy Patch Lane and access side junctions.

There will be signed diversion routes in place throughout the closure.

Businesses at Station Road, Gifford Crescent, Pegasus Park and Stokers public house will remain open for business as usual and will need to be accessed via signed diversions.

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Gipsy Patch Lane will reopen to two-way traffic from 6am on Monday 25th April. All side road junctions will also reopen to traffic from this date.

Road widening work will continue to be carried out on Gipsy Patch Lane, west of the railway bridge (Rolls-Royce side), and to enable this work narrow lanes will be in place along this stretch of the carriageway.

The main construction work for the CPME scheme is due to complete in September this year. Other work, such as the installation of bus shelters and iPoints, along with landscaping, will be completed in the autumn.

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Cabinet Member for regeneration, environment and strategic infrastructure, Cllr Steve Reade, said:

“The Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension is a key step in our ambition to improve public transport, walking and cycling facilities, and the road network in South Gloucestershire as part of our record £174 million investment.”

“It is also part of our commitment to tackle climate change by encouraging more people out of their cars and onto sustainable transport options, helping to reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality. The reopening of Gipsy Patch Lane to two-way traffic is another move towards the completion of this flagship scheme.”

“We apologise for any inconvenience caused by this work and thank the local community for their continued patience.”

Timeline table.
Timeline of Gipsy Patch Lane bridge and highway works.

Embankment issue

Photo of bridge wing showing proposed extension.
Proposed retaining wall extension (shown in grey) required to stabilise the embankment on the north-east corner of the new bridge.

The Gipsy Patch Lane Stakeholder Liaison Group has been made aware of an ongoing issue with the stability of the railway embankment on the north-east corner of the new bridge (close to the Station Road junction).

A council spokesperson told the Journal:

“Network Rail has confirmed that the north-east embankment is currently fit for purpose for both supporting the safe running of the railway and allowing full reopening of the road. To ensure its long-term stability, Network Rail plan to further strengthen the embankment in the form of an extended retaining wall. The council will update the community when Network Rail confirm a programme for this work and the traffic management needed.”

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More information and related links:

This article originally appeared in the March/April 2022 issue of the Stoke Gifford Journal magazine (on pages 6 & 7). The magazine is delivered FREE, nine times a year, to over 5,000 homes in Stoke Gifford, Little Stoke and Harry Stoke. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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Additional overnight road closures

UPDATE added 31st March 2022.

Photo of an excavator working on a road scheme.
Highways works on Gipsy Patch Lane, west of the railway bridge, in March 2022.

South Gloucestershire Council has announced three additional overnight full closures of Gipsy Patch Lane that are needed in preparation of the resurfacing work taking place over Easter.

Gipsy Patch Lane will be closed to all traffic between the junction of Little Stoke Lane and the entrance to Pegasus Park on the following dates:

  • Friday 1st April 2022, 8pm to 6am
  • Saturday 2nd April 2022, 8pm to 6am

Gipsy Patch Lane will also need to be closed between its junction with the A38 and the entrance to Pegasus Park on Thursday 7th April 2022, from 8pm to 6am.

A council spokesperson said:

“These closures are needed to enable our Streetcare teams to change the temporary traffic management, relocate the temporary vehicle restraint barriers and carry out additional survey work along the road.”

All side road junctions along Gipsy Patch Lane that fall within the closures will also need to be closed to traffic. This includes the junctions for Titan Road, Taurus Road, Station Road, Gifford Crescent, the service roads, Smithcourt Drive and Bush Avenue.

Signed diversion routes will be in place during the overnight closures.

Pedestrians and cyclists will still be able to use the shared-use path along Gipsy Patch Lane and access the side junctions.

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Road reopened

UPDATE added 24th April 2022.

Photo of cars passing under a railway bridge.
The first vehicles pass under the new railway bridge on Gipsy Patch Lane. Little Stoke, after the road was reopened to two-way traffic following a closure lasting more than two years.

Gipsy Patch Lane was reopened to two-way traffic along its full length shortly after 10am this morning (Sunday 24th April 2022) – a day earlier than previously advertised.

Read more: Gipsy Patch Lane now fully open in both directions

An article outlining the remaining work to be carried out on Gipsy Patch Lane (and any associated traffic management) will appear in the May issue of the Journal magazines, distributed from 14th May.

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2 comments

  1. SGC should be thorough embarrassed with this complete disaster…..zero haste and a completly over run….worst performing council ever.

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