Changes to a controversial M4 junction layout “causing delays” in Wiltshire are yet to be agreed despite strong support.

Last month Wiltshire Council confirmed it planned to reverse alterations to the A350 northbound lane designations approaching junction 17 of the M4.

These changes, which came into force last year, mean the left-hand lane is only for drivers taking the M4 west, while all other vehicles are funnelled into the right-hand lane.

This has caused lengthy delays for commuters and has been widely criticised by residents and councillors.

READ MORE: M4 junction 17 layout could be reversed ahead of overhaul

Junction 17 of the M4Junction 17 of the M4 (Image: Newsquest)

The council is undertaking traffic modelling to demonstrate that the previous layout would improve junction performance.

National Highways, which owns the junction bridges that the council operate, says nothing has been agreed but it will work with the council to implement changes once modelling has been completed.

Route manager, Chris Hilldrup. said: “Safety is our number one priority, and we are undertaking extensive and detailed investigation and survey work, along with safety critical resurfacing on the M4 at junction 17.

"Following these works, we will continue to work with Wiltshire Council on the road layout to ensure that any changes are safe and in line with traffic modelling."

The planned move to reverse last year’s changes has received support from councillors, including Cllr Howard Greenman, the representative for Kington, who has been campaigning against them since their introduction.

He said: “I had representations from a lot of villagers, they’ve all been upset and I think all of us have.

“It’s been a very big issue and I’ve personally had a couple of near misses when cars have realised they’re in the wrong lane too late and cut across.

“It has undoubtedly caused delays.”

SEE ALSO: New road layout at M4 junction labelled 'confusing and dangerous'

Cllr Nic Puntis at junction 17 of the M4Cllr Nic Puntis at junction 17 of the M4 (Image: Newsquest)

Many have labelled the current layout “dangerous” and Cllr Nic Puntis, the representative for Cepen Park and Derriads, said many residents in his division have also suffered long delays.

He added: “I am extremely annoyed that the left-only was put in at that junction and it’s going to be changed very soon.

“A lot of residents in Cepen Park North use that every day to get to work and have been pushing me on this.

“I understand the council and National Highways are in discussions about how to alleviate the delays for residents.

“That will involve changing the left-only designation to left and straight on.”

Cllr Puntis, who is standing as the Conservative candidate for Chippenham at the upcoming election, says he has lobbied Transport Secretary Mark Harper to push through changes.

Junction 17 of the M4Junction 17 of the M4 (Image: Newsquest)

Challenging Cllr Puntis will be Liberal Democrat candidate Cllr Sarah Gibson, who branded the changes to the junction an “absolute nightmare”.

She has also supported the council’s plan to scrap the current system, but says the information gathered over the last year will be useful for the council’s long-term plans to improve the roundabout in a £31 million scheme.

She said: "I am pleased the signage is being reversed as it was causing congestion, however I am sure that this trial will have helped with the design of the proposed improvements to junction 17, where additional lanes are being introduced.

“Computer modelling of junctions can only tell us so much, whereas now we know that there is a significant volume of traffic going north and east.”

Wiltshire Council declined to comment, but Cllr Nick Holder, cabinet member for highways, previously said he was working on reversing the changes as a “medium-term solution” to “increased queues” at junction 17.

Also contesting the Chippenham seat at the Thursday, July 4 election is Ravi Venkatesh for Labour, Declan Basely for the Green Party, Jubin Jomon for the Workers Party, and Anthony Bohana for Reform UK.