A main Derbyshire road will be closed for seven weeks while work to rebuild a landowner’s retaining wall is carried out to prevent its collapse.
Derbyshire County Council has approved the closure of a 130m stretch of the A5012 Via Gellia so the wall outside a property on Chapel Hill, Cromford, can be made safe.
The work – to be carried out on behalf of the landowner by a private contractor – will start on Wednesday (September 6).
The county council said work had been delayed by a few days to avoid other road closures in the area which would have caused significant diversions for residents and businesses. It is expected to be complete by Monday, October 23.
Councillor Trevor Ainsworth, Derbyshire County Council cabinet support member for highways, transport and infrastructure, said: “It became clear that there were a series of roadworks, repairs and events in neighbouring areas. Closing this stretch of the Via Gellia as originally planned would have had a knock on effect on traffic, so it was agreed with the landowner’s contractor that work to rebuild the wall would be put back.
“The wall has been closely monitored and it has now been decided that with winter approaching and a greater likelihood of wet weather causing the ground around the wall to deteriorate further, increasing the risk of collapse, the work should not be delayed any longer.”
The Via Gellia will be closed at its junction with Chapel Hill in the direction of Slinter Wood during the seven week reconstruction.
The wall rebuild had originally been set to take place in the spring. The county council said it was put on hold to spare motorists from getting caught up in several road closures – including nearby roadworks, emergency repairs to a rock face overlooking the Via Gellia and the Eroica Britannia and Women’s Tour of Britain cycle events passing through Derbyshire.
The county council added that the road needed to be fully closed because the wall is on a hillside and work to rebuild it can only be carried out from the highway.
Specialist equipment is needed to rebuild the wall. Due to the size of the machinery it is not practical to move it on and off site each day which is why the road needs to be closed around the clock.
The signposted diversion is along the A5012, the A515, the A5270, the A6, then back on to the A5012 and vice versa.
Councillor Ainsworth added: “This is not a Derbyshire County Council project but as the highways authority we are required by law to give permission for the road to be closed. The work is necessary for safety reasons, to reduce the risk of the wall slipping into the road and so that it meets current planning standards for a conservation area where it is located.”
“We will continue to work with the landowner’s contractors to ensure the work is carried out as quickly as possible in an effort to keep disruption to a minimum.”