Kelston Road re-opens after months of repair work

The A431 Kelston Road in Bath, which has been closed because of landslips last winter, has re-opened after months of repairs.

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Kelston road opens to traffic after landslip repairs

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Bath commuter route due to re-open on Monday

Work to repair the Kelston Road in Bath, which is due to re-open on Monday Credit: ITV News

The Kelston Road just outside Bath is due to re-open at 6am on Monday, 16 November.

The main A431 has been closed since a landslip in February. In the meantime, local businessman Mike Watts set up a toll road as an alternative which will now be rendered redundant

Kelston Road repairs could finish early

Kelston Road closed in February after cracks appeared Credit: ITV News

Work to repair the A431 Kelston Road in Bath is likely to finish this month, ahead of schedule.

The busy route has been closed since February when part of the road subsided, leading to fears of a landslip.

The work cost £2.6 million and involved drilling concrete piles down as far as 15 metres below the ground to stabilise the land and support the new road.

Bath & North East Somerset Council’s priority has always been to achieve a permanent solution so that we don’t have problems with road slippage in the future.

I’m very pleased that we will soon be able to re-open the road – we promised local people that we would achieve this before Christmas, and we look set to achieve this ahead of schedule.

– Cllr Paul Crossley, B&NES

The Council will also take the opportunity before the A431 re-opens to resurface part of the road in Kelston village. It will take place overnight from 11-13 November.

Why this man is upset by a Bath road reopening early

Mike Watts with his business rates bill Credit: ITV News

The man who gained international attention for opening a private toll road near Bath fears he'll be £25,000 out of pocket - because the route it replaces is due to reopen early.

Bath and North East Somerset Council originally said it would take until Christmas to repair the A431, which suffered a landslip after the winter storms.

Now, however, it's likely to be ready by mid-November. That means Mike Watts, who's spending £300,000 on a toll road around the missing section, won't have enough time to recoup his investment.

The council denies speeding up the work to undermine him. But to add insult to injury Mr Watts has now been sent a £3,000 bill for business rates - even though the council has withheld planning permission.

Work on the A431 near Bath, which is due to re-open on 17 November Credit: ITV News

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Bath toll road man says he could be left in debt

The toll road was built across a field to bypass roadworks at Kelston. Credit: ITV News West Country

The man who invested £300,000 in a private toll road near Bath says he could be left in debt.

Mike Watts built it to bypass roadworks at Kelston. But he says the work could be finished by mid November rather than Christmas, leaving too little time to recoup his investment.

Next phase of repairs begin on Kelston Road

Work to fix damaged Kelston Road continues as huge piling rig is installed

The huge piling rig is up and running alongside the damaged part of Kelston Rd.

It will drill the concrete foundations into the ground - up to 15 metres below the damaged road in an effort to provide better protection after part of the ground subsided.

Meanwhile, Mike Watts who runs the toll road running alongside Kelston Rd says he has hit the 100,000 car mark raising around £180,000 of the £300,000 he needs to break even.

Kelston bypass on track to break even

Kelston bypass on course to break even Credit: ITV News West Country

A businessman who built a £300,000 toll road to bypass roadworks on Kelston Road is on course to make his money back. 62 year old Mike Watts rented an empty field next to the A431 which connects Bristol and Bath and built a 365m bypass. Mike Watts needs to make £60,000 a month to break even and is almost there.

People are coming over the road with beaming faces and I have had letters of support from all over the country.

We are actually on Google Maps now which is brilliant because it means that sat navs are recognising the road now.

But we have managed to hit that 25,000 mark even though the signs for the road on the Gloucestershire side only went up last week, and the signs on the B&NES side haven't gone up yet.

– Mike Watts
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