Finkelgate in Norwich could remain closed indefinitely

A busy Norwich road which has been closed since last year after one of the houses started to collapse could remain shut indefinitely, it emerged today.

Finkelgate, off Queens Road, was closed after four terraced homes in the street had to be evacuated when extensive cracks appeared in the house closest to the entrance to Notre Dame High School.

CNC Building Control, based in Yarmouth Road, was put in charge of making sure the house was safe, which it has done, but work on the site is now believed to be in limbo awaiting the results of an investigation by the insurance company.

Alan Osborne, CNC director of operations, said: 'The building is now safe and there's little chance of it falling down.

'As far as I'm aware the site has been handed over to the insurance company to ascertain what happened. It's in limbo now.'

The collapsing house had been occupied by Neil Harrison, who was unavailable for comment.

He is still living in alternative accommodation but Toby Hockley, who lives a few doors down in Finkelgate, has been allowed back.

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Mr Hockley said residents were being kept in the dark about what was happening.

He said: 'The builders dug the road up and then left. We don't know when the road will be reopened.'

A spokesman for Norwich City Council said: 'We are still investigating the issues on Finkelgate and we will reopen the road as soon as possible.'

As reported, problems first arose on Christmas Eve evening, when the Fire and Rescue Service were called to the house after the occupier reported cracks and problems closing a door.

On the advice of a structural engineer the Fire and Rescue Service shored up the building to reduce the risk of further movement and collapse and the occupier was advised to find alternative accommodation.

At lunchtime on Christmas Day the Fire and Rescue Service responded to a further call and found that the condition of the property had deteriorated, along with signs of subsidence in Finkelgate itself.

The police advised immediate neighbours that they should evacuate, and these residents made their own accommodation arrangements.

Have roadworks affected the area where you live or work? Call reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email