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Preston North End fans heading south to Wembley at the weekend for their promotion battle with Swindon Town will benefit from Highways England action to smooth drivers’ bank holiday journeys – but are being urged to plan ahead for the trip south.
At least 30,000 Lillywhites fans are heading from Lancashire to Wembley Stadium on Sunday (24 May) with a 5.30pm kick-off for the match against Swindon which will see one of the teams promoted to the Championship.
Highways England will have completed dozens of projects in time for the bank holiday weekend and will lift other road works to give drivers and families smoother holiday journeys. But while no carriageway closures will be taking place on Highways England routes to and from Wembley, fans are being advised some stretches of motorway will have narrow lanes and 50 mph speed limits in place where work to install Smart Motorway systems, part of a 5 year £11.35 billion government modernisation plan, is underway.
John Hope, Highways England’s events and emergency planning manager for the North West, said:
We’re finishing or suspending dozens of projects in time for the bank holiday to smooth people’s holiday journeys but for safety and other reasons it’s impossible remove the traffic management for Smart Motorways road works.
Drivers heading to Wembley and back will find themselves heading into narrow lanes with 50mph speed limits along stretches of the motorway network and should leave extra time for journeys – including some time to take a break.
Among Smart Motorway road works drivers may encounter over the weekend include:
- M60 and M62 Greater Manchester between M60 junction 8 and M62 junction 20
- M6 West Midlands between junctions 10a and 13
- M1 West Yorkshire between junctions 42 and 39
- M1 South Yorkshire between junctions 35a and 32
- M1 South Yorkshire/East Midlands between junctions 31 and 28
- M1 in Bedfordshire between junctions 13 and 10
A 50mph speed limit and narrow lanes is also in place along a three mile section of the M6 in Cheshire between junction 17 and 16 where work is taking place to repair bridges. Drivers using the M1 through the East Midlands will also find a 50mph speed limit in place between junctions 19 and 15 near Northampton where a concrete central reservation barrier is being installed.
Drivers are urged to check travel conditions before setting out on journeys. Highways England provides live traffic information via its website, local and national radio travel bulletins, electronic road signs and mobile platforms, such as the iPhone. Information is also available from Twitter via @highwaysNWEST as well as services in other regions.
Providing they can do so safely, road users can also call the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000 to keep up to date with road conditions.
Members of the public should contact the Highways England customer contact centre on 0300 123 5000.
Journalists should contact the Highways England press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.