Works to transform roundabouts at the bottom of Ipswich Road and Harwich Road started in September last year.

In the eight months since they started drivers have faced delays and road closures.

And that was before there were unforeseen issues and motorists who flouted closures.

Now Essex County Council has announced Ipswich Road will close for FIVE MONTHS to complete the next stage of the work.

Highways boss Kevin Bentley described it as a "short-term pain" to get to the improvements.

There is no end in sight to the 15 months of roadworks so we have taken a look back at the last few months.

September 2018

The roadworks start at bottom of Ipswich Road in Colchester.

Within days drivers had reported hours of delays because of the £10 million works.

Works include replacing the double roundabouts at Ipswich Road and Harwich Road with a single roundabout at each location.

The carriageway between Ipswich Road and Harwich Road junctions will also be widened to accommodate two lanes.

Eurovia has been granted the contract and expects to be on site until winter 2019.

October 2019

Essex County Council closed the southern most section of Ipswich Road, between its junctions with St Andrew’s Avenue and Fenwick Drive for a period of four weeks.

The section of road was closed for roughly 70 metres, however drivers were sent on a 2.66 mile diversion including have to navigate some of Colchester’s busiest roads in order to get to the other side.

Businesses told the Gazette there were already feeling the effects of a town centre road closure.

Bahaskr Patel, owner of My Convenience, said there have been queues outside the business since the works started.

He said: “I am probably losing at least £100 a day from customers because at the moment there is no way they can just stop and come in to the shop."

Christie Wettasinghe, manager of taxi firm Hawaii Five-O, said his drivers have labelled the works “absolutely diabolical”.

Before the month was out more closures were announced.

The three day closure was for 40ms of Ipswich Road.

It was a continuation of the works on the northern side of the Fenwick Road junction and drivers were told it would remove the requirement for BT to close the junction again for works in the new year.

November 2018

A petition calling for nightmare roadworks to be sped up hit nearly 1,000 signatures in 48 hours.

Complaints were made about the effect nightmare roadworks were having on the emergency services and businesses.

Colchester MP Will Quince became the latest to call for urgent action on the town’s disruptive roadworks.

Waitrose was adamant roadworks outside its store have not adversely affected its business.

It was revealed utility pipe diversions on the controversial roadworks have cost Essex County Council an extra £1 million.

December 2018

The works were stopped for two weeks over the Christmas period.

February 2019

The northbound carriageway on Ipswich Road was due to be closed between Fenwick Drive and the Ipswich Road roundabout between February 18 and March 11.

But both sides of the road were then closed just two days into works after drivers flouted safety restrictions.

Essex Highways and Eurovia took the decision after “too many drivers” ignored signs for the lane closure.

March 2019

A driving instructor claimed old road markings in roadworks in Colchesters are causing a danger to motorists.

Roadworks to allow Anglian Water to carry out water main work were expected to end in mid March but Essex Highways announced the road needed to be shut for a further seven days after workers encountered problems.

The water firm found an existing water main was not where it should have been and have had to fill in a trench and dig another one.

A spokesman for Essex Highways said the only options were to suspend work and then have to come back later in the year with a two-week closure, or extend for a week and finish the job.

Ipswich Road was later reopened but the council then revealed it would need to be closed again for Anglian Water to finish work.

April 2019

Closures of the bottom of Harwich Road began.

But engineers found part of the carriageway was collapsing due to water leaks.

It means gas works had to be suspended.

Motorists were told the road would have to close for another two weeks.

May 2019

It was revealed Harwich Road would remain closed until mid May.

Highways bosses announce Ipswich Road will have to close for five months.