Drivers are being asked to provide extra time for their journeys as the final phase of a major road improvement scheme gets underway.

Essex Highways says contractor Jackson Civil Engineering will be carrying out work on Sheepcotes roundabout along the A131.

The roundabout, which connects Braintree Road with Essex Regiment Way, is set to be revamped as part of a casualty reduction scheme aimed at lowering the number of traffic collisions.

Workers will be aiming to create a dedicated left turn slip lane which will connect the two roads directly and Essex Regiment Way will be widened to add another lane for the approach to the roundabout.

The roundabout itself is set to be reduced in size as part of the works.

Contractors began preparing for the work last week and construction will begin from this morning.

Essex Higwhays is hopeful the improvements will be completed by spring 2020.

A spokesman said: "We fully appreciate that this is a traffic sensitive site and their works will be planned to minimise inconvenience to the area while allowing efficient working.

"Please refer to Traffic Management arrangements for further information about how these works might affect you.

"We would advise drivers to plan journeys to allow extra time during the construction period and to take care when passing through the area as traffic management will be altered according to the activities being carried out."

Temporary four way traffic lights will be installed on the roundabout between 8pm and 6am each day until at least the end of November.

Highways has also warned road closures will have to be put in place at some stage during construction but it is unclear which roads will be affected.

The improvements being made to Sheepcotes roundabout form part of a £7.3m scheme which has seen other changes made to other parts of the A131 and A130.

Work has already been completed on Deres Bridge and Nabbotts roundabouts respectively, while a bus lane along Essex Regiment Way has also been extended.