ROADWORKS on Sandford Road near Wareham are set to resume today after they were abandoned at the weekend following hours of delays.

The work by Wessex Water on the A351 caused chaos on Saturday with motorists stuck in delays for up to two hours due to the temporary traffic lights.

It led to workers being verbally abused by some drivers and the water company suspending the works hours later.

The delays caused long waits on Sandbanks Ferry and congestion on alternative routes.

Thousands of people headed to Dorset at the weekend to enjoy the sunshine, with events such as Tankfest at Bovington and Poole’s Folk on the Quay also proving popular draws.

The work was to repair the road following a burst water main earlier this month.

Due to the state of the temporary surface and concerns about the safety of the carriageway, work to permanently reconstruct the road was brought forward and started on Thursday.

Temporary lights were needed 24/7 ‘for the safety of road users’, said travel information service, Travel Dorset.

Work could be done exclusively at night, but the hole in the road would still be there in the day, a spokesperson added.

Workers were able to leave the road in a safe condition on Saturday.

A spokesperson for Travel Dorset said: "We’ve been advised of a number of abusive comments directed at works operatives by motorists.

"This is absolutely not acceptable. Whilst we apologise for the disruption, please be respectful of workers who are just doing their jobs repairing your road and keeping your water running."

They added: “Wessex Water will recommence the final phase of road reconstruction works on A351 Sandford Road at 9.30am tomorrow morning, with traffic lights.

“Work is expected to continue well in to the afternoon and possibly evening rush hour, but will likely be the last day of work.”

Online, people called on officials to shut the road completely and put in proper diversions.

One person said: “Can’t believe you authorised road repairs on the A351 on a sunny Saturday.

“Not only affects Dorset residents but probably put off many tourists wishing to visit Purbeck.”