St Mary’s junction roadworks: ‘Noke Common has become a car park’ as traffic lights cause traffic chaos (updated)

Cllr Ward told the resident that the expected delays were “well communicated” but that “there will always be those who doesn’t get the message”

traffic noke common

A Newport resident who lives on Noke Common is calling on the Isle of Wight council to take action over what he describes as long and continued tailbacks around the St Mary’s junction roadworks.

For over a week Roy Scott says that the new traffic lights for traffic from Forest Road have been causing massive congestion, back to Northwood, to Coppins Bridge, and also on Forest Road itself.

Scott: My road has become a car park
Roy has been in writing to Isle of Wight councillors for some time, and this morning updated them on the situation, asking what they intended to do.

Noke Common has effectively become a car park, he says, as drivers attempted to get from Cowes to Newport.

traffic on noke common

Ward: Light at the end of the tunnel
Cllr Ian Ward, the cabinet member in charge of transport issues, replied to say there was “light at the end of the tunnel” and that the scheme is due to finish a month earlier and under budget.

Roy said he didn’t care whether the scheme was under budget, because “it wasn’t our money anyway”. He said the road closure at Rolls Hill and the suspension of the Cowes floating bridge (also under Cllr Ward’s portfolio and out of service for the last three weeks) was making a bad situation even worse.

Ward: “There will always be those who doesn’t get the message”
Cllr Ward told Roy that it was always the case that August would be the month causing most delays and that,

The work at Forest Road junction and the expected delays was well communicated, but there will always be those who doesn’t get the message.”

IWC: Tree removal was a safety issue
News OnTheWight has asked the council what they will be doing to remedy the long tailbacks.

An Isle of Wight Council Spokesperson said,

“A temporary road closure was put in place on Rolls Hill yesterday for essential safety work to remove tree branches.

“As this was a safety issue, it was not possible to delay work, or wait until the winter when St Mary’s Junction improvement project was completed.

“The work was scheduled to take place outside of peak times and Island Roads allocated additional resource to ensure it was completed in one day, rather than the intended three.

“Given the nature of the work it was also necessary to undertake it during daylight hours.

“While this work was essential, we apologise for inconvenience caused, which may have been added to by other matters including a road traffic accident at the same time in Horsebridge Hill.”

Article edit
12.02pm 4th August 2020 – Response from IWC added

Image: © Roy Scott

Monday, 3rd August, 2020 3:20pm



Filed under: Isle of Wight News, Newport, Roads, Top story

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12 Comments on "St Mary’s junction roadworks: ‘Noke Common has become a car park’ as traffic lights cause traffic chaos (updated)"

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Cllr Ward is speaking utter rubbish. It’s been known for several weeks that today marked the planned return of most furloughed employees to their work places. It’s also known that it is the School Summer Holiday. Both of these are Nation-wide events. It’s within the gift of Cllr Ward to know that planned works would make this worse, and that his precious floating bridge is out of… Read more »
Cllr Ward is spot on. “There will always be those who doesn’t get the message”. He was told at the public meeting at Medina theatre that the new lights would cause chaos because of the number of junctions within the whole scheme. The maximum any set of lights will be on is 25% of the time otherwise no other road in the scheme gets to be on… Read more »
For those that didn’t attend the public meeting, those giving the presentation were asked about the timings of the lights. They were unable to answer but said that each cycle of the lights would be 120 seconds. That’s all they knew for a meeting that was supposed to reassure us all. So essentially in any two minute period the set of lights you are waiting at will… Read more »

The other bit that was asked was about pollution for all the vehicles that would be stationary at the lights. Those giving the presentation pooh-poohed the suggestion. There will be no increase in pollution they said. Shows what they know. Welcome to the Islands own Spaghetti Junction complete with pollution.


Cllr Ward told the resident that the expected delays were “well communicated” but that “there will always be those who doesn’t get the message”

Well the message to Cllr Ward should be, ‘YOUR DAYS ARE NUMBERED’


What has the Island done that, consistently, Blue, Orange or no colour, we get hopelessly incompetent political leadership at County Hall?

Its like a reverse midas touch. Everything they touch turns to worthless c***.


Get the message — and do what? Avoid travelling from Cowes/Newport or Newport/Cowes for the duration? How does that sit with ‘getting back to normal’, back to work, etc.?


Councillor Ian Ward lives in Sandown.
Don’t need to say anything more.


Having sat in the traffic queue from Cowes to Newport today for a total of 2hrs 20mins all I can say is that the man’s a numpty as are other officials who let this debacle go ahead!!


“It was always the case August would be the month causing most delays”. “The work is a month ahead”. Logic is not one of our councillors strong points.

We used to drive to Biella in Italy. They had discovered roundabouts and how well they worked, so the city over a period of a few years replaced the lights with roundabouts which are still working well. Admittedly some also have lights – but at peak times only.( Coppins bridge lights would benefit)I wonder how many years it will be before we are treated to the next… Read more »

@ chippy2
Excellent point,well made.
One of the suggestions made at the time was for a roundabout as an alternative to lights on the Forest road junction. The council were not interested in that either.