West Berkshire Council

A339, Cheap Street and Bear Lane Improvements

A major road improvement project for Newbury started on 7 January 2019.

The £1.8 million project, funded by developer's contributions from the Newbury Racecourse development and Local Transport Plan capital grant funding recognises the need to create more capacity on the busy town centre network. The opportunity will be taken to resurface the roads during these works.

You can pdf icon view a list of Frequently Asked Questions [355kb] about the project.

Drawings showing the new road layout can be viewed below:

Phase 1 - 7 January to April 2019

The introduction of traffic lights at the junction of the A339 and Cheap Street to allow traffic to turn right from the dual carriageway into Cheap Street. There will be off peak lane closures and pedestrian diversions. 

Update - The contractor has brought forward carriageway resurfacing on the A339 and an area of Cheap Street which means Phase 1 will now be completed in April 2019. 

If you have any questions, comments or would like further information, please get in touch with the Highways Projects Team.

Traffic using the A339/Bear Lane Junction

End of Week 21 - Friday 07 June

Written on: 12-6-2019

The ducting work around the inside of Bear Lane roundabout is now complete. The kerbing on the traffic island to the south of the roundabout is also complete. Work continues on the traffic island to the east of the roundabout with amendments to the kerb ongoing at Kings Road. The rest of the kerbing on the roundabout will take place under night time closures to ensure minimum disruption to traffic.

Work at Cheap Street has moved location across to the footway on the west side of the road and at the junction with Market Street. The Contractor laid a new duct underground ready for the signal equipment and has temporarily reinstated the paving blocks on the footway to enable it to be reopened to the public. Similarly the road crossing is complete with 4-Way ducts now buried in position. Barriers will remain in place to protect the open excavation but access to the shops and businesses and is maintained at all times. Cheap Street will remain closed to southbound traffic with access now only possible via the new right turn from the A339 southbound. Next week there will be temporary traffic lights on the carriageway at Market Street during off-peak hours in the day to ensure the safety of workers, road users and the general public.

Below is the work forecast for next week commencing 10 June:

  • A339 traffic islands - continue taking up and removing old kerbs and pavement and reinstate new kerbline to amended traffic island shape

  • Bear lane - topsoil and concrete around the traffic signal box and re-erect roundabout sponsor signs

  • Kings Road West / A339 - install tactile paving "Cycle ladder" outside of BT building

  • A339 Southbound Footway - excavate to install ducts outside Sainsbury's and in footway beside the Police Station

  • Cheap Street/Market Street - construct new buildout at junction and excavate Market Street footway to lay ducts and begin new crossing

Please note that to enable works to the footways on the A339 there will be pedestrian diversions in place. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience caused but the works have been planned for the safety of the public at large.


End of Week 21 - Friday 31 May

Written on: 5-6-2019

Work has begun on the Bear Lane roundabout with lane closures in place this week during the school holidays. Excavation took place in the verge of the roundabout for 4-way ducts to be installed to house the traffic signal cables. Kerbs have been replaced where they have been either dislodged or damaged. The traffic islands to the south and east of the roundabout have had kerbs realigned to the new design. Pedestrians and cyclists are asked to follow the diversion route whilst the new crossing points are constructed.

The northern end of Cheap Street has changed shape with new kerbs and drainage installed at the junction with Market Street. Progress was slowed due to the presence of existing utilities under the footway however the paving is being reinstated now with new blockwork. Cheap Street remains closed to southbound traffic and vehicles must now use the new right hand turn from the A339 to access Cheap Street and the railway station.

Below is the work forecast for next week commencing 3 June:

  • A339 traffic islands - new kerbs, channels and tactiles on islands

  • Bear Lane Roundabout - continue excavation on verge inside roundabout and lay new ducts and chambers for the signal equipment

  • Cheap Street/Market Street - finish reinstatement and move across to opposite footway to begin laying ducts and excavating for new kerb line and crossing point


End of Week 20 - Friday 24 May

Written on: 28-5-2019

As of this week the contractor has increased the number of workmen, activities and locations on site as we progress with Phase 3 of the project and make the most of the restricted working hours. Next week the contractor will start work on the inner area of Bear Lane roundabout and this will involve closing off the inside lane to traffic during off-peak hours (9:30 to 3:30) to give an adequate safety zone to realign the kerbs and install the new upgraded traffic signal equipment. Work will continue simultaneously on the islands to the south and the east of Bear Lane where there has been good progress excavating the existing footways and kerbs, and installing the ducts and traffic signal chambers.

The new crossing point is being constructed on Kings Road opposite Sainsbury's with the blister tactile paving, dropped kerbs and channels set in their new position. Likewise the relocated crossing on the traffic island to the south of  Bear Lane has been part constructed. The new areas of carriageway, created from the old islands to increase traffic capacity, have been tarmacked with base and binder courses and now await the surface wearing course which will be laid along with the rest of the A339 resurfacing towards the end of the scheme.

A339 Blog Photo Wk 20
A339 Blog Photo Wk 20

Cheap Street remains closed to southbound traffic entering from Market Street and this has enabled the installation of new signal ducts halfway under the road, and construction of the relocated gully chamber to connect to the existing surface water drainage system. The blockwork on the footway continues to be relaid making good the old paving where it had got scruffy and it had sunk or where the levels had gone awry through past utility reinstatements.

Below is the work forecast for week commencing 28 May:

  • Kings Road/Mill Lane - Install ducts and signal equipment at crossing point. Excavation of old kerb line and existing footway / verge.

  • A339 Traffic Islands - Continue to lay new ducts and chambers ready for new traffic signal equipment. Kerb works for the new island design.

  • Bear Lane Roundabout - Exacavate inside the roundabout to break out existing kerbline and lay new ducts and signal equipment

  • Cheap Street/Market Street - Ducting and installation of signal equipment at junction with Market Street.


End of Week 19 - Friday 17 May

Written on: 20-5-2019

SGN have finished their gas mains replacement work and now Mill Lane has reopened to traffic. This has relieved congestion on the A339 and through the site.

Work is progressing well on Cheap Street for the new crossing point. The dropped kerbs, tactiles, post retention sockets, chambers and ducts have all been installed. Further up the road the ducting work has slowed again with discovery of shallow depth utilities but the chambers and ducts have been successfully repositioned. The closure of Cheap to Street to southbound traffic has enabled working space to remove the old crossing island on the junction with Market Street. Work has begun on the road crossing at this location for new ducts to carry the new signal equipment under the carriageway.

The islands on the A339 roundabout are quickly changing shape to the new design as kerbs and footways are being removed and excavated for the new widened carriageway and junction alterations. Pedestrians are being diverted temporarily whilst work is simultaneously takes place on all three traffic islands. Ducts and chambers are being installed ready for the upgraded signal equipment. 

Below is the work forecast for week commencing 20 May:

  • Kings Road/Mill Lane - continuation of new drainage and ducting

  • A339 Traffic Islands - excavate to break up pavements and remove kerbs. Lay new kerbs and ducts for signal equipment

  • Cheap Street/Market Street - ducting and installation of new pedestrian crossing


End of Week 18 - Friday 10 May

Written on: 10-5-2019

Traffic Management is back on the A339 this week with off-peak lane closures in place in both directions to enable kerbing works on the traffic island to the south of Bear Lane Roundabout. Work has also begun on the buildout between Kings Road and Mill Lane to remove the existing kerb line and block paving and excavate in preparation to lay the sub-base for widening the carriageway. Although unrelated to our works it is anticipated that SGN will complete their gas main replacement in Mill Lane within the next two weeks.

The contractor has indicated that in order to construct the new kerb line, central island and to keep works progressing they must close the entry in to Cheap Street (from Market Street) to maintain the appropriate safety zones for their operatives and the general public. Therefore as of Monday 13 May 2019 entry in to Cheap Street (south) from Market Street will be closed.

However the new signalised junction on the A339 will operational on Monday (13 May 2019) and all vehicular traffic entering Cheap Street will now be via this junction. Within Cheap Street two-way flow is maintained between the new A339 signalised junction and Kings Road West. Therefore between Kings Road West and Market Street will now be one way in a northern direction.

Below is the work forecast for week commencing 13 May:

  • Construct new gully and surface water drain on Kings Road / Mill Lane junction in preparation for the revised kerb line. New ducts to be laid for repositioned signals.

  • Continue laying kerbs and ducts on the reshaped traffic island to the south of Bear Lane roundabout.

  • Finish ducting on Cheap Street/Market Street and construction of tactiles and kerbs for the relocated pedestrian crossing.

  • Remove kerbs, break out the traffic island on Kings Road ready to lay ducts for the new signal equipment outside Sainsbury's.