Commuters making the new year slog back to work have faced extended road works and delays on one of the borough’s busiest roads.

The work is to allow Thames Water to carry out sewer repairs at the junction with Percy Road and Hospital Bridge Road in Whitton.

Roadworks are expected to last until at least January 18, due to unexpected ground conditions, but were meant to finish before Christmas.

Former Richmond councillor Ray Hollebone, of Warburton Road, said he had walked past the site many times when there were no workers in sight.

He said: “It was particularly bad before Christmas. I was told by an engineer they should be working 12 hours a day, but I walk past there a lot and they are usually gone by 4pm.”

He said he thought Thames Water should be doing a better job.

The 77-year-old said: “They are a professional company; they shouldn’t be able to get away with it.”

The works require the temporary closure of northbound traffic between the A316 and Percy Road.

A Thames Water spokeswoman said: “We categorically reject any suggestion that delays on this job are due to workers’ laziness. That is simply not the case.

“We are dealing here with a very complicated situation because we have to pump out very high ground water from around the sewer pipe due to last year’s record rainfall and we also have to contend with challenges brought about by local soil conditions. Loose sand is causing voids underneath the road.

“Voids under the road are incredibly dangerous. If left unchecked they can cause the road to collapse.

“We have also identified another collapse on the sewer further down at the junction of Hospital Bridge Road, Percy Road and Powder Mill Lane. The section from Percy Road to the A316 is now repaired and we are working to get the rest of the job done as quickly as we can.”

For more information on the road closures and diversions, visit