THE final stage of a delayed major roads project will restart next month and roll on until the end of the year with new funds set to be agreed.

Access to Headington was scheduled to cost £12.5m but an extra £3.5m will be ploughed in over the next five years to pay for 'enhancements' to the project’s third phase.

Disruptive work on Headley Way was supposed to start in January but was delayed after uncertainty over whether the work would come in on budget.

Oxford Mail:

Weeks before, residents said they were worried about the traffic ‘nightmare’ awaiting them, with the John Radcliffe Hospital issuing warnings that parking could take up to two hours.

The project seeks to improve roads, roundabouts and traffic lights across Headington and surrounding areas, reduce congestion and encourage more cycling.

Another set of works, which will include tricky spots outside the hospital and on the Marsh Lane junction, are set to begin in April, along with others at Cherwell Drive and Headley Way. They will last until December.

Oxfordshire County Council said it needed to seek ‘additional sources’ of funding but work would resume with one now secured.

A £3.5m slice from the £215m Oxfordshire Housing and Growth Deal is expected to be approved by the Oxfordshire Growth Board at a meeting on Tuesday.

Other improvements include a pedestrian crossing in Osler Road and other work along Windmill Road and Old Road.

But final details on what work will be done remain incomplete and will only be revealed once they are finalised over the next few months.

Headington county councillor Roz Smith said her colleagues told the project manager of the scheme of the extra money at a meeting on Tuesday, as a press release containing the information from the Growth Board was sent out to media outlets.

She added: “[The project manager, Isaac Webb] said: ‘thanks for the heads up’ because they hadn’t been told. That is ridiculous. They hadn’t told the people leading the project.”

A long-standing critic of part of the project to replace mini-roundabouts in Cherwell Drive with traffic lights, Marston councillor Mick Haines said he was upset by the plan’s resumption.

He said: “It’s really disappointing. I thought they would have more sense.”

The date for work in April is yet to be finalised.