A ROAD closure is driving motorists to despair.

The A6033 between Oxenhope and Hebden Bridge has been shut since mid-July, forcing drivers to take a lengthy detour.

And now to compound motorists' misery, roadworks are about to start on the diversion route!

Worth Valley ward councillor Rebecca Poulsen has accused Calderdale Council, which has closed the A6033 for safety work, of mishandling the project.

"This is a very well used road and the closure has caused enormous inconvenience to residents on both the Calderdale and Bradford sides of the council boundary," she said.

"There was no consultation or discussion with Bradford councillors or residents beforehand – the first we knew about the closure was when the 'road closed' signs went up.

"If they'd spoken to us first we could have ironed-out some of the potential niggles.

"The road is closed from Monday morning through to Friday night every week, with no access at all during that period."

Councillor Poulsen said that after she raised her concerns with Calderdale Council, it had agreed to consider introducing temporary traffic lights following an initial six-week closure. But that idea has been scrapped.

"It is impacting not only on residents but on local businesses and tourism," she added.

"The lack of up-to-date information for affected road users adds to the problems.

"Local people deserve better."

Calderdale Council says it is aware of people's concerns about the work and that it is "really sorry" for any inconvenience.

But Councillor Jane Scullion, the council’s cabinet member for regeneration and strategy, said: "The works are vital as this road is rated one of the most dangerous in the UK, so we need to install important safety measures to reduce the risk of accidents.

"We have done everything possible to minimise disruption and have worked with our contractor to review the current situation.

"The health and safety of our staff and the public is our priority and we have agreed that works will continue using a full weekday road closure rather than allowing vehicles to access the road using temporary traffic lights. This is to keep everyone safe, as the road is narrow.

"Works will therefore continue with the full road closure in place from Monday to Friday. No works will take place at weekends, allowing vehicles to access the road.

"Continuing to work under a weekday closure should also allow us to substantially complete works by the end of October, ahead of the initial expected completion date of late November, subject to weather conditions.”