Norwich City Council gets ready for Finkelgate work

A contractor has been put on standby to carry out the work to get a Norwich street which has been closed since Christmas open again.

But a date for when the work in Finkelgate can start is still not sorted because a resolution has yet to be reached with the insurers of homes badly hit by subsidence.

Finkelgate, which connects Queens Road with Ber Street, has been shut since Christmas Eve, when massive cracks appeared in the terraced home nearest to the gates with Notre Dame High School.

Four homes were evacuated and the following day signs of subsidence were spotted in the road, with a large depression outside the worst-affected house. The road was closed to traffic, and has remained shut ever since, while it is understood some people who had to leave their homes have still not been allowed back.

The Evening News reported in June how nearby businesses were angry that the closure of the road had hit their trade, with large traffic queues choking the nearby streets in rush hour as traffic tried to negotiate the junction with Ber Street and Queens Road.

Investigations by chartered building surveyors established the subsidence was caused by a gap created by water or another feature in the chalk below the road.

The city council is responsible for the road, but because the homes are private, the authority has not been able to start work to get the road re-opened because insurers have yet to decide whether the affected homes should be rebuilt or knocked down.

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The council says it is still 'robustly' seeking a decision from the insurers, but has put measures in place which will allow a rapid start to re-open the road once the wrangle is resolved.

A spokeswoman for Norwich City Council said: 'The city council has a contractor generally on standby for doing patch work around the city but we wouldn't have a contractor on standby for a patch the size of Finkelgate.

'So, in this instance, we have notified a contractor to be on standby ready to start work on Finkelgate so that we can get under way with the necessary work at a moment's notice.'

• What do you think of Finkelgate still being closed? Tell us your views by writing to Evening News Letters, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE or by emailing