RESIDENTS of a country lane claim drivers are using their road as a short cut during a scheme of roadworks.

Essex Highways has closed a section of Church End, Panfield, for the installation of a new junction.

A diversion route has been introduced, but residents of Water Lane, Shalford, say that traffic is using their road instead of the marked route.

One local resident, who asked not to be named, said: “We have experienced an increase in traffic from about 50 cars per day using the lane to 2000 plus and the associated high speeds, rudeness and dangerous driving.

“It was pretty obvious what would happen when a huge amount of traffic enters a single track lane with no passing places and blind bends from opposing directions.

"Highways state that car drivers will not use Water Lane, but any fool will realise that the local residents know this is shorter than following the marked diversion, and clearly anyone with a sat nav will use Water Lane as a short cut as all of the passing delivery drivers will agree.”

A spokesman for Essex Highways said drivers should obey speed limits.