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  • Writer's pictureSafer Highways

Banwell Village bypass given unanimous council approval


Construction of a bypass around a congested village has received final approval from the council.


North Somerset Council voted unanimously in favour of the £56.5m contract.


Council leader Mike Bell said he hoped to have it completed by May 2026 - almost 100 years since the scheme was first proposed.


Compulsory purchase orders need to be approved by the secretary of state before work can begin.


Banwell Bypass was first proposed in 1927. The village suffers from serious traffic congestion as it lies at the crossroads between two busy A-roads, which are at one point only wide enough for one vehicle to pass.


Banwell Bypass was orginally proposed in 1927


According to the council, the proposed bypass will reduce traffic through the village by up to 78%.


The contract to build the 3.3km (2 mile) bypass was awarded to Alun Griffiths (Contractors) Ltd.


The contract is forecast to cost £56.5m, out of a total of £89.2m funding approved for the scheme, which includes costs such as consultants, utilities, and contingency money.


Homes England has provided £77.3m of this money, with North Somerset Council contributing £11.9m.


During debate before the vote Mr Bell said: "It's a significant milestone in delivering a bypass that has long been hoped for but never achieved.


"I was in Banwell recently for some of our budget engagement work and one resident told me in the mobile library that he would be 'flabbergasted' if a bypass was ever built.


"Well, I'm pleased that if we do support this report, he can prepare for his flabber to be gasted."

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