Marine Drive in Southport. Photo by John Dempsey

The coastal road in Southport will be fully reopened in time for Easter weekend. 

A section of Marine Drive, between the Plough roundabout and Marshside Road, has been closed since January to allow essential repair works to take place. 

The carriageway had become so poor that Merseyside had imposed a cut in the speed limit from 50mph to 30mph to ensure safety for road users, particularly for motorbike riders. 

Sefton Council says that the work is now ahead of schedule, which will allow it to be reopened in two weeks’ time, on Thursday, 14th April  – just in time for the typically busy seaside weekend. 

Southport is sure to be busy, with Southport Pleasureland having reopened for the 2022 season last weekend, and lots of other local businesses open. 

A diversion route has been in place since January, directing motorists via: Hesketh Road, Cambridge Road, Marshside Road and vice versa. 

Workers are currently carrying out the reconstruction of both the road and the pavements along with the installation of a new and improved drainage system. 

Work was initially due to be completed ahead of the Summer season, with large events such as Southport Flower Show and Southport Air Show due to return after a two-year absence. 

The early reopening will bring a huge boost to the local economy and the visitor economy. 

The roadworks scheme will cost £895,000 to complete with £637,000 from the Highway Challenge Fund and £258,000 from the 2020-21 Highway Maintenance budget. 

In his report earlier this year, Sefton Head of Highways and Public Protection Peter Moore said: “Marine Drive is recognised as a key route into Southport and the carriageway surface condition needs to be improved. It is proposed to focus on the area between Hesketh Road and Marshside Road, which is considered to be in the greatest need of attention.

“Over time, the condition of the road surface has deteriorated, which has affected its ride quality and the safe discharge of surface water from the carriageway, despite best efforts to try and maintain its structural integrity through routine repairs and the application of preventative type surface treatments which are now considered uneconomical.

“The works to be undertaken will involve the reconstruction of both footway and carriageway and the installation of a new and improved drainage system.”

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