Drivers are being warned of delays on the M62 over the Pennines with roadworks set to begin in May 2023 – and last for 27 months.

National Highways, which runs the motorway network, has announced lane and carriageway closures for the stretch from Junction 19 (Heywood) through Ainley Top and Clifton to Junction 26 at Chain Bar, Cleckheaton.

The works, due to start on May 11, involve replacing the metal central reservation safety barriers with concrete ones. At the same time there will be technology upgrades and routine maintenance of the road structure, verge and drainage.

During the works lanes or a whole carriageway could be closed but this would be limited to overnight or weekends when traffic is lighter.

Depending on the nature of the work being carried out, speed restrictions could be imposed down to as low as 40mph.

Nick Wells, National Highways regional sponsor, said: “We’re preparing to start work on upgrading safety barriers on the M62 between West Yorkshire and Greater Manchester.

“The upgrade will replace sections of existing metal central reservation barrier with concrete. Concrete barriers are much stronger than metal ones and significantly reduce the risk of vehicles crossing over from one carriageway to another, improving safety and reducing the duration of incident-related congestion.

“They are also virtually maintenance free and will last twice as long as normal metal barriers, with far less need for closures for routine repairs in the future.

“We’re planning to start work on this important upgrade next month and will be announcing further details as they are confirmed over the next few weeks.”

National Highways pledged to keep delays to a minimum “keeping three lanes of traffic open where possible.”

A spokesman added: “Any additional restrictions, such as lane or carriageway closures, will be limited to overnight or at the weekend, when traffic flows are lowest, with fully signed diversions. Further information on any closures will be shared as they are confirmed.

“While the upgrade is being carried out, we strongly advise anyone planning to travel in this area to plan their journeys well in advance and allow more time to reach their destination.”

Updates will be shared on Twitter feed @HighwaysNWEST and the National Highways North West Facebook page. (