EXHIBITIONS about improvements to the A303 are being held in Chard and Ilminster next week.

They are part of a study into improving the A30/A303 between Honiton and Broadway, built more than 80 years ago.

They will set out the progress of the study so far and next steps to improve the route.

The route, which links Chard and Ilminster with London via Basingstoke in Hampshire, has long been the subject of transport campaigns to upgrade it because of congestion.

Six stretches of road are highlighted for improvements, including overtaking lanes on hills and picnic areas.

Cllr Nigel Pearson, who represents Chard North, said he hopes people visit the exhibitions to put their views across.

He added: “I suspect that the changes would make a difference and people who use the road should come along as they will have more of an idea than anybody.”

The exhibitions are on Tuesday, July 15, from 3- 8pm at The Shrubbery Hotel, Ilminster, and on Thursday, July 17, from 3-8pm in The Guildhall, Chard.

The study results will feed into the Government’s review of the 90-mile stretch of the route from Stonehenge to Honiton, carried out by the Highways Agency, which will publish its findings in the autumn.

A Somerset County Council and Devon County Council survey carried out last month found 80% of people think congestion is an issue and 97% wanted improvements made to the route.

County council deputy leader Cllr David Hall said last month that the survey underlined serious shortcomings in the route and added that the economic benefits of upgrading the road were ‘very significant’ for the region.