Damaged road may cost more than £7m

The cost of repairing a stretch of Northumberland road damaged by a landslide could be just over £7.5million – but this has been described as a ‘worst-case scenario’.

The B6344 between Rothbury and Weldon Bridge has been shut since Boxing Day and it is not expected to reopen this year.

An application has been made by Northumberland County Council for just under £5million of funding from the Department for Transport. The local authority would be required to contribute just more than £2.5million on top of this.

But Coun Steven Bridgett said: “The council is preparing for every eventuality and at present an estimate has been prepared that covers all the known difficulties and allows for all constraints to be considered and mitigated against.

“What we must concentrate on, however, as we move towards the summer, is saying that our communities are open for business.

“The other route into Coquetdale is very scenic; to that end, I have requested new brown signs for along the A697 highlighting the new route.”