WORK has started to upgrade the gas supply network in St Leonards as part of a £150,000 project. The metal mains in the A31 Ringwood Road need to be replaced with modern plastic polyethylene pipe.

Work began on Monday and will last about six weeks. It will take place in Ringwood Road between the Boundary Lane roundabout and Woolsbridge Road in three phases. Work will be carried out between 8pm and 6am, to minimise disruption.

The first phase of the project will take place at the Boundary Lane roundabout for one week.

Work will progress to the westbound carriageway of Ringwood Road from the Boundary Lane roundabout to immediately east of Beech Lane.

During this phase, temporary overnight lane closures in the westbound carriageway will be needed. At times, lane closures in the eastbound carriageway may also be required.

The final two-week phase of work will take place overnight in Ringwood Road at its junction with Woolsbridge Road with an eastbound lane closure, and also overnight at the Boundary Lane roundabout with lane closures around the works in both directions.

Southern Gas Networks (SGN) construction manager Colin Horne said: “We understand that people can get frustrated by roadworks. However, the new plastic pipe has a minimum lifespan of 80 years. This means that when the work is complete, people will continue to enjoy the benefits of a safe and secure gas supply.”