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£650k for emergency slope stability works
Friday 4th January 2019 @ 09:36 by Lauren Entwistle
Denton & Audenshaw Droylsden News

More than half a million pounds is to be spent to shore up two crumbling embankments to prevent gardens collapsing in Tameside.

By Charlotte Green, local democracy reporter

The council has agreed to carry out slope stability works on land it owns in Denton and Droylsden, at a cost of £650k.

However, the town hall says because the works were ‘unforeseen’, the extra cost to the authority could impact on how much they have to spend on other capital projects.

The majority of the capital programme is currently paused while officers assess what the council should prioritise in the wake of the extra costs incurred after the collapse of Carillion.

The urgent remedial works are required because the plots off Fairlea and Greenside Lane are showing signs of ‘land failure’, which the town hall has the responsibility to fix.

Both sites are embankments sloping down behind residential properties, which support the gardens for the houses.

Officers state that over an 18 month period the council’s engineers have been assessing the stability of the embankments.

A council report revealed that the land masses are still moving, with evidence at the surface of the slope and in some people’s gardens.

Deputy council leader Councillor Bill Fairfoull said it was ’emerging work’ that the authority had a duty to carry out under health and safety law.

Site investigations and modelling by specialist Geotechnical Engineers has proven that unless remedial works are undertaken the embankments will continue to deteriorate.

And engineers say that eventually the residential gardens will become ‘unusable’ by the occupants.

Executive member for neighbourhood services, Coun Allison Gywnne said: “The council has a legal responsibility around retaining walls and embankments so we are just fulfilling our responsibility.”

However, because the works were not anticipated, and are expected to a be one-off solution, the town hall says it ‘may be appropriate’ to fund the works from the general fund.

Director of finance, Kathy Roe said: “Wherever there is an impact with United Utilities they are also contributing a significant sum of money in order to get this resolved at the same time.”

The decision notice states that no alternatives have been considered as the council would be at risk if there was a partial or full collapse of the slope, as it knew there may be a danger to passers-by, or to residents in the neighbouring houses and gardens.