End of road in sight for delayed repairs

Collapsed: Repairs to Glossop Road in Broomhill could be completed early next year after weeks of hold-ups.
Collapsed: Repairs to Glossop Road in Broomhill could be completed early next year after weeks of hold-ups.
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A COLLAPSED road could be reconstructed within weeks, after delays caused by an uncharted water course, high winds and the difficulty of finding specialist engineers in the run-up to Christmas.

Broomhill Lib Dem councillor Paul Scriven has emailed John Charlton, the head of the council’s Street Force service, urging him to ‘make every effort’ to get Glossop Road repaired sooner than the anticipated date of January 16.

The council had originally hoped to reopen the route before Christmas.

The closure of Glossop Road is hitting traders, who have suffered an estimated 30 per cent fall in business.

It is also causing traffic congestion along the main diversion route, Whitham Road.

Mr Charlton said the ‘critical factor’ in the timings of the repair was that “the construction industry virtually closes over the Christmas and New Year period and sourcing material is very difficult”.

Howard Fry, secretary of Broomhill Forum, said: “It’s disappointing the council doesn’t appear to be putting as much rigour into getting this problem sorted as quickly as it might.

“I have observed that very little work seems to be happening on the site outside of normal hours.”

Former Sheffield Council leader Paul Scriven said: “There seems to be no drive to resolve this serious issue which is causing problems for businesses and residents.”

But a Sheffield Council spokeswoman said it has to abide by complex European Union procurement rules to buy materials for the work - meaning it cannot simply ask companies for quotes and make a quick choice in the same way as a private company could.

Coun Leigh Bramall, Sheffield Council cabinet member for environment, said: “Let me assure everyone I want the road opened as fast as possible and I am constantly challenging everyone involved to make this happen.

“Workers have been on site seven days a week wherever possible, we have drafted in extra cranes and employed additional excavators.

“The discovery of an uncharted water course under the road has delayed matters. High winds meant the crane could not be used.

“A high voltage electricity line runs under the road and, with the water course being discovered there too, there is a danger of electrocution should the water course be severed. Should the electrical supply line be severed, a large area of Broomhill would lose power supply so the work has to be done carefully.

“We also need to ensure the road itself is made fully safe for traffic.

“We have done everything possible to source materials. Stone supply is not an issue.

“However, we have been unable to contract the specialist design engineers needed on such a complex and potentially dangerous job during the Christmas period.”