Motorists in Gloucestershire face seven-mile detour for months because of burrowing badgers

Badgers have been digging up road in Gloucestershire. Credit: ITV News

Motorists in two Gloucestershire villages face a seven-mile detour for the next three months because of burrowing badgers.

Council bosses have closed a short stretch of road between the villages of Kempsford and Hannington Wick, near Cirencester. But some motorists have already been ignoring the diversion, removing railings and moving cones to get through.

Some motorists have been ignoring the diversion. Credit: ITV News

Badgers have removed tonnes of earth, leaving the road structurally unsound.

It is suspected that their sets have left tunnels and holes beneath the tarmac, creating dips and subsidence along the carriageway.

Earth along this stretch of road has been moved and removed by the badgers, making it structurally weak. Credit: ITV News

Environmental laws mean the highways team have to wait three months before construction to allow the animals to leave the area.

Badger sets line the road in Gloucestershire. Credit: ITV News

Work will begin here on 1 July when the Highways team will remove the surface of the road and assess just how much damage has been caused underneath. Workers will then dig up the earth and relay the road.

Teams aim to have the road reopened by the time of the Fairford Airshow. Credit: ITV News

But the time pressure is on to get the road reopen in time for the Fairford Airshow which takes place from 19-21 July 2019. Two teams will work around the clock, 24 hours a day, to have the road reopened by 15 July.