HEAVY barriers have replaced temporary traffic lights and cones after reports exasperated drivers were throwing them off the road.

Drivers in Kennington apparently got so fed-up with a eight-month road closure of Bagley Wood Road they started moving temporary traffic lights off the road and even hurling the traffic cones into the neighbouring woods.

Oxfordshire County Council closed the road in October to carry out repairs which have still not been done.

The county council’s contractor reached a point where it was having to come out up to six times a week to replace the lights, their batteries and cones according to Kennington Parish Council.

This week the cones and traffic lights were replaced with heavy water-filled barriers and traffic priority signs.

But it is still not clear when the repairs will actually be done.

Richard Gregory, who lives on the road, said it was still perfectly usable and no worse than many other roads around Oxfordshire.

He said: “No sooner had the highway maintenance crew set the cones back down the middle of the road and repositioned the traffic lights than someone came along and threw the cones over the hedge into the woods and turned round the lights.

“A smooth flow of traffic was then restored along the road.

“I have spoken to some of the vigilantes and can confirm that it is not the act of drunks or indeed always the same person.”

He added: “It would have cost a lot less to have poured a temporary Tarmac patch over the one or two potholes than the costs and time wasted in maintaining these traffic lights over the eight months before the road can be resurfaced properly.”

The council closed half the road in October to protect deteriorating road edges.

The surface became damaged after drivers started using the route as a short cut while major roadworks were being carried out at Hinskey Hill Roundabout.

The parish council said the traffic lights were set “on demand” – sensing when traffic arrives. It meant when drivers ignore red, the lights have to re-set themselves, making for more frustration and time wasted.

County council spokeswoman Catarina Walsh said: “We cannot give an absolute date at this present time when we will be carrying out the work as it all hinges on us obtaining permission to go ahead from the district council.

“It will be during the summer months of July or August this year.”

She said when the work does take place, the road will be closed withresidents’ access only for approximately three weeks.