A SECTION of the A69 between Carlisle and Newcastle is set to close for seven nights to allow for resurfacing work to be carried out.

In their latest update on the progress of the A69 Bridge End Roundabout at Hexham, Highways England confirmed the eastbound carriageway would be temporarily closed.

In a statement, Highways England said: “From Monday, May 17, the eastbound carriageway of the A69 will be closed at Hexham for seven nights to enable resurfacing work on the Bridge End roundabout.

“Traffic will be diverted along the A6079 to Low Brunton, the B6318 Military Road and the A68 to rejoin the A69 at Stagshaw.”

Since work got underway last year, more than 200,000 tonnes of earth has been removed to create the excavation 11 metres below the old roundabout where the new A69 will run.

So far, construction of the east and west bridge walls was finished before the bridge decks were lifted into place. The eastern retaining wall, which supports soil and earth next to the structure, was completed last month. The next few months will focus on street lighting, signs, kerbs, road surfacing, new fencing, barriers on slip roads, the roundabout and the A69 itself.

Highways England project manager Alek James added: “I’m very pleased that we’ve successfully jacked the bridge decks into place and it’s nice for people to get a proper look at the fruits of our labour.

"I’d also like to reiterate how proud I am of the team for the work they’ve done throughout the Covid-19 crisis and difficult weather conditions.

“By completing this landmark stage of the scheme, we have moved a significant step closer to the moment everyone is waiting for which is opening to traffic this summer.”

After this summer’s opening to traffic, landscaping and planting (including some wildflowers native to the area) will be carried out, with all traffic management removed by the autumn.