AN MP has called on Essex Highways to reopen a road after months of “traffic chaos”.

Rayleigh and Wickford MP Mark Francois has said County Hall must re-open Watery Lane, which runs from Hullbridge up to the Rettendon Turnpike, as soon as possible.

The road, which for years has been used as a shortcut by people trying to get to Rettendon and head north, has been closed due to building works by Barrett David Wilson on their new development at Malyons Farm, in Hullbridge.

The 500-home development started on July 22 this year, with work on the new roundabout on Watery Lane, which will provide access to the site, set to last for 12 weeks.

The situation has been made worse as the developers have also had a contraflow in place on Lower Road, Hullbridge, whilst they attempt to create a new access onto the site – whilst at the same time, Countryside Properties, which also had a contraflow in place on Rawreth Lane, is working on its own parallel development there.

Mr Francois said the construction has resulted in unbearable delays and traffic for residents and has also called on all the developers to complete their access works as quickly as possible.

He said: “I have spoken personally to county councillor Kevin Bentley, deputy leader for Essex County Council and cabinet member for infrastructure, including the road network, to urge him to re-open Watery Lane as soon as practically possible.

“In fairness, he quickly understood the point and said he would do what he could.

“In addition, as he oversees the road network in Essex, I have also asked him to try to ensure that we do not face a situation like this again where, as it were, all the busses come at once, in terms of road closures and multiple contraflows all at the same time.

“This has been causing considerable inconvenience to my constituents and I would like to see the situation rectified with a sense of urgency, as soon as practically possible.”

Mr Bentley said: “I’d like to thank Mark Francois for everything he has done in regard to this issue as the local member of parliament.

“I would welcome and be delighted to receive an application from the developers, that is safe, to reopen Watery Lane.”

A spokesman for Countryside Homes said: "Our work to create a new access junction on Rawreth Lane is being carried out as quickly as possible and in accordance with the permit issued by Essex County Council.

"We’ll continue to take every opportunity to minimise disruption for the local community where practicable.

“Since the work began, we’ve been manually controlling the lights and removing them as often as possible to minimise disruption.

"However, since the return of the schools this week, we have put additional restrictions in place to ensure the lights are only used outside of peak hours which we hope will further improve the situation.

“Unfortunately, due to the nature of this work, some disruption is unavoidable however we recognise, and very much appreciate, the patience shown by the local community.

"We expect the work on Rawreth Lane to be completed during October and will continue to monitor the situation carefully.”