A MOTHER-OF-EIGHT is leading a community fight to force the council to relieve the traffic 'chaos' caused by major roadworks in Kings Road.
Noreen Goodwin, 40, from Parsons Green, rallied neighbours and businesses to confront road bosses at a specially organised meeting at St Dionis Church on Wednesday night in protest at the 'insufferable' traffic snarl-ups caused by the repairs to fix a failing gas pipe.
Mrs Goodwin and recruitment boss husband Tony, who have eight children aged between 15 months and 14, say the repairs, which have closed an eastbound section of Kings Road, have made driving 'hell' and have decimated trade for local businesses, who also vented their anger at the meeting.
The pair are demanding the council ease congestion caused by the repairs by opening a road barrier at Chelsea Harbour to allow the area to be used as a diversion route and to do the same with fire gates in Britannia Road.
Mrs Goodwin said: "It is chaotic and, frankly, insufferable. Residents are up in arms, traders' businesses are being decimated and children are late for school. We have no problem with the pipe being fixed but there has been no thought put into the planning."
Hammersmith and Fulham Council network coordinator Mike Allen, present at the meeting, says Transport for London have 'strongly objected' to opening the barriers in Chelsea Harbour, which are the responsibility of Kensington and Chelsea Council, while residents in Britannia Road objected when the fire barriers were opened there.
Mr Allen was mocked when he insisted traffic flow had improved along Kings Road this week, with several hecklers shouting at him that the road remained a 'car park'.
Michael Weaver, of the Guinevere antique shop in Kings Road, said businesses had been badly hit by the works and questioned why the repairs were taking place during Chelsea Flower Show.
"This is the start of the 'London season' and is the worst possible time to do this," he said. "Why couldn't they have waited until after the Olympics?"
Victoria Popper, who runs the Pippa Poppins nurseries said a driver so enraged by the delay had run down a toddler in a push chair in Peterborough Road one day last week.
She said: "He was so angry he sped off aggressively and hit the pram. The child needed treatment from paramedics."
Mr Allen said the period between the end of the football season and the Olympics was the best time to carry out the works and said traffic had improved after signs were put up in neighbouring boroughs for cars to stay away from the area.
A spokeswoman for Hammersmith and Fulham Council said it was urging National Grid Gas and contractors Morrisons to complete the works by June 30 and said the authority is doing all it can to minimise disruption, opening fire gates in Waterford Road and Michael Road to ease congestion.
She said: "This is a very fluid situation as the traffic flow adjusts and finds new routes and we are keeping a very close watch so that we can to help keep traffic moving."
The pipe is being fixed after leaking six times in 18 months amid fears of an explosion.