A MAJOR employer in Wellington has taken steps to help reduce congestion which is grinding the town to a halt.

Relyon has increased its on-site parking availability in a bid to persuade workers to stop parking along Longforth Road, which is often gridlocked at peak times.

Many motorists are left frustrated with the build up of cars on the road, which leads to the Station Mills factory, but it is hoped the extra parking spaces will have a positive effect on town centre traffic.

A spokesman for Relyon said: “The directors are always looking at ways to reduce congestion for our site. An immediate action that has already been taken is to increase our on-site parking availability.

“We also look forward to continuing our ongoing discussions with Taunton Deane Council regarding the Longforth Farm development and the possibility of gaining access to the east side of our site, which would help greatly.”

Helen Boyd, Wellington’s police sergeant, said officers were in discussion with the firm over the possibility of staggering shifts.

Sgt Boyd said this would reduce the flow of traffic from the factory, which employs around 500 people.

However as reported by the County Gazette in February, traffic lights at the Longforth junction have also been causing problems for some time, especially with the increased number of cars heading in and out of Waitrose since it opened in 2010.

The lights are synchronised four ways which leads to a build-up of traffic in the centre of town, particularly when the lights in South Street and North Street allow cars to pass through to High Street.

Motorist Karen White, who uses Longforth Road most days, said: “Sometimes the light sequence is so short that only one car goes through.

“Therefore at that rate no wonder it takes so long for the road to clear if there is a bit of a peak in traffic.

“I've been the second or third car in the queue before and someone has not been quick enough to notice the green light, has hesitated or maybe has not got into gear quickly enough to move off and the light has gone back to red and not a single car got out.”

What would you like to see done to help reduce traffic in town? Comment on this story at somersetcountygazette.co.uk or email michael.marsh@nqsw.co.uk