A road which has been closed since a landslide claimed a woman’s life is to re-open this morning.
Susan Norman, 68, died in her house at Sandplace Road in Looe after it collapsed following torrential rain on March 22.
Busy adjacent St Martin’s Road has also been shut as fears about the stability of the land persisted.
But today, after weeks of repair work by Cornwall Council contractors it is to re-open to traffic – three days earlier than expected.
The news comes just a week after business owners in Looe criticised the length of time it had taken to complete the works, with one claiming he was losing thousands of pounds a day in lost trade.
“At last Looe is truly open for business” ” said Bert Biscoe, the council’s cabinet member for Transport and Waste.
“The closure of St Martin’s Road has caused difficulties for many local residents and businesses. I am very pleased that we have been able to re-open faster than programmed.“
“Thanks to the people, businesses and visitors to Looe who have borne this difficulty with patience and fortitude.”
The works, which included installing concrete piles into the rock strata under the road, were originally expected to take up to ten weeks to complete, with the road scheduled to re-open to traffic under traffic light control on Friday, July 19 ahead of the main school summer holiday.
Under the new traffic management scheme St Martin’s Road will be open to two way traffic under traffic light control.
Sandplace Road will remain open to two way traffic; once the Police and Health and Safety Executive return to site to continue their investigations, then Sandplace Road will operate on a “give and take” basis without the use of traffic lights. Staff from CORMAC Solutions Ltd will be on site for the next week to monitor the situation and make adjustments to minimise disruption.
Further works will then take place in the winter to allow the road to return to full two-way operation.
** Information on the works which are taking place in Looe and advice and activities for local residents and businesses are available on the Council’s website – www.cornwall.gov.uk/looelatest