Problem Northumberland road between Rothbury and Weldon Bridge to close for investigation work over cracking
A problem road in rural Northumberand is to be closed to traffic for preparatory ground investigation works.
Northumberland County Council is working to develop a long-term solution to the cracking in the road between Weldon Bridge and Rothbury.
The historic problem on the B6344 at Todstead arises from the complex combination of the underlying geology of the valley, the weak soils, water pressure within the underlying rocks and erosion by the River Coquet.
There is evidence of movement and road repair to keep the road in use stretching back decades.
As an essential part of the design process, the council will be carrying out ground investigation works in the coming months.
To enable the investigations to take place, preparatory work will be starting on Monday, November 23 and is expected to take three weeks to complete.
The B6344 will be closed to traffic between 8.30am and 5pm for a week from November 23 to November 30.
During the road closure, a signed diversion will be in place via the B6341. Should there be adverse winter weather during this period the road closure will be removed so that the road can be used. For the following two weeks, works will be carried out at Todstead under traffic light control.
The ground investigation works will follow early in the New Year.
Council leader Glen Sanderson said: “This investigation work should give us a much better understanding of what options are available on how best to proceed with this complex project.
“The safety of everyone who uses this road is an absolute priority and a short temporary closure while we prepare the area for this crucial phase is unavoidable.
“We would like to thank road users for their patience and understanding while we do this work which we will endeavour to finish as quickly as possible.”
On Boxing Day 2012, there was a landslip at nearby Crag End which closed the road for over three years and cost over £10m to repair, with drivers forced to take a four mile diversion through Longframlington.