A county council in the UK has caused a stir by announcing a 41-mile detour for motorists next week – as a result of just 165 feet of roadworks.
For five days, traffic will be diverted from the Dorset village of Godmanstone into the neighboring county of Somerset in order to avoid the works on the A352 highway.
Drivers will be treated to a highly scenic route past Cerne Abbas – home to the famous hillside chalk figure the Cerne Abbas Giant – up to the picturesque town of Sherborne and onto Yeovil in Somerset, a former centre of the English leather-making industry, before looping back down to the A352.
The diversion will take more than an hour, according to Google Maps, only for vehicles to re-emerge a couple of miles further along the road from tiny Godmanstone, population approximately 130.
The closure will allow a sewer connection to be made on the road through the village, with work starting on Monday October 28 and anticipated to finish on Friday November 1.
In a statement, Dorset Council said: “The official diversion has to be suitable for the type of traffic that would normally use the closed section. This is an A road so we have used other A roads for the diversion.”
It added that smaller local vehicles “will undoubtedly use” other minor roads to bypass the closure, meaning that not all drivers will be forced to travel the full 41 miles of the official detour.
If anyone contravenes the council’s notice and attempts to pass through the area of roadworks, they are liable to receive a fine of up to £1000 ($1285).