FESTIVAL goers have been urged to avoid a clash with visitors to Countryfile Live in an attempt to stop a repeat of traffic chaos.

Wilderness Festival and Countryfile Live both start in West Oxfordshire on Thursday, the second year in a row they have overlapped.

Traffic chaos marred the first two days of last year’s Countryfile event at Blenheim Palace in Woodstock, with motorists queuing for hours to get into the world heritage site.

Oxfordshire County Council leader Ian Hudspeth, who represents the Woodstock division, said congestion this year could be alleviated by Wilderness festival goers avoiding the A44 through Woodstock and taking a different route to Cornbury Park in Charlbury.

Countryfile Live organisers SME London said ‘lessons have been learned’ from last year’s chaos and that a new traffic management team was in place, as well as a new 2,000-space car park.

An estimated 125,000 people attended Countryfile last year, with 30,000 revellers at Wilderness.

Mr Hudspeth said: “It would help to reduce congestion if Wilderness visitors avoided going through Woodstock.

“It looks like the diversion signs that are already in place are directing Wilderness drivers onto other routes.

“For example if you are heading south on the A34 there is a sign for Wilderness which says go through Bletchingdon and that is designed to avoid Woodstock.”

Mr Hudspeth said he hoped the new traffic management plan would help festival goers to reach their destinations as quickly as possible.

He added: “The advice for Wilderness drivers is to use their sat navs but only until they see diversion signs.”

He said both events were a boost for the economy and he planned to visit Countryfile.

Festival tickets website skiddle.com advised Wilderness drivers to follow yellow signs to the festival site – not their sat navs – but it also said drivers ‘approaching from the east and south should ‘use the A44 north through Woodstock and turn left down the B4437 towards Charlbury – contrary to Mr Hudspeth’s advice.

As part of the new traffic management plan for Countryfile Live, road closures and reduced speed limits will be in place.

The four-day event in Woodstock is expected to be popular once again, with BBC presenters John Craven, Matt Baker and Anita Rani appearing.

Last year the traffic management team was criticised after one sign on the approach to Woodstock appeared to have been covered by a bin bag.

A 30mph speed limit – reduced from 50mph – will be in place on the A44 from Sandy Lane roundabout to Woodstock from 6am on Thursday to 11pm on Sunday.

Tom Clarkson, marketing director for Countryfile Live, said traffic management company CTM were working for both events. No one from Wilderness was available for further comment.