No roadwork closures on motorways during mourning period
- Credit: Will Durrant
National Highways has suspended roadwork closures on motorways in the eastern region following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
Closures have been paused on the M25 London Orbital and M11 motorways from the beginning of this week (Monday, September 12) until after the Queen's funeral on Monday, September 19.
John McNeill, of National Highways East of England, said this decision has been made to ease congestion.
Scores of mourners are expected to travel into London to pay their respects to the late monarch during her lying-in-state.
Mr McNeill said: "We expect the roads to be busy with people looking to travel into the capital and to other royal residences over the weekend.
"Our traffic officer patrols will be out on the network to help anyone who might get into difficulty, but it’s important people remember to check their vehicle before setting off.
"The last thing anybody wants on the way to their destination is to have a vehicle breakdown.
"That’s why it’s really important that people spend a few minutes checking the condition of their tyres before setting off."
North of London, National Highways confirmed road closures have been cancelled on the M11 between London and Cambridge.
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Closures affecting the M25 London Orbital were also pulled, as were plans to shut the M4, which passes Windsor, the M23 between London and Gatwick Airport, and the M3.
A National Highways statement adds: "Existing roadworks will also be removed where possible, with cones and temporary signals withdrawn from 6am on Friday, September 16 and not put back in place until Tuesday, September 20."
The decision to suspend roadworks applies to motorways nationally.
Any decision to suspend roadworks or closures on A-roads - such as the A11, A12, A14 and A47 - will be made on a "case-by-case basis", National Highways said.
The Queen's lying-in-state is set to take place this week at Westminster Hall in the Palace of Westminster, London.
A government statement reads: "The public will be able to file past the coffin 24 hours a day from 5pm on Wednesday, September 14 until 6.30am on the day of the funeral - Monday, September 19.
"Those wishing to attend will be required to queue for many hours, possibly overnight. Large crowds are expected and people are encouraged to check ahead, plan accordingly and be prepared for long wait times."
Transport for London is asking mourners to "avoid" driving in the capital.
Live London traffic information is on the TfL website: https://tfl.gov.uk/traffic/status
A TfL spokesperson said: "Avoid driving in central London if you possibly can.
"There are road closures in place.
"Allow extra time for your journey and consider an alternative route.
"Road closures may be changed or extended during the mourning period."
Queen Elizabeth II died on Thursday, September 8 at the age of 96.