Matlock Bridge to shut for six weeks for flood wall engineering works

A major Matlock thoroughfare will be closed to traffic for around six weeks, as work begins on essential repairs to the town’s crumbling flood defences at a cost of up to £5million.

By Ed Dingwall
Thursday, 9th June 2022, 2:56 pm
Updated Thursday, 9th June 2022, 3:04 pm

Matlock Bridge will be closed to pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles from 7am on Monday, June 13, until early August to prepare the bridge for engineering works along the river below.

The Environment Agency, Derbyshire County Council and Derbyshire Dales District Council are working together to manage the risk of flooding from the Derwent following the collapse of a wall behind businesses in Crown Square during the February storms.

Councillor Kewal Singh Athwal, the county cabinet member for highways and transport, said:“We realise that the work will mean some disruption to traffic in the town, but this work needs doing as soon as possible to protect homes and businesses.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The river wall has been temporarily shored up with hundreds of bags of rock.

“Whilst the temporary highway work is done pedestrians should use the footbridge in Hall Leys Park for alternative access across the River Derwent.”

Tim Braund, director of regulatory services at Derbyshire Dales District Council, added: “Through signage and regular messaging we will be prompting residents and visitors that Matlock will remain open on both sides of the river, and that businesses trading throughout this period.”

The next stage of the project requires alterations to the road to temporarily allow two-way traffic over the bridge.

Temporary highway surfacing will be built on top of the existing road surface and pavement and is expected to be in use by vehicles for up to 18 months.

Once this work on the bridge is complete, the A6 at Derwent Way will be closed so a large crane can be situated on the road to carry out the necessary work on reinstating the flood defences. All traffic going north and south will then be able to use Matlock Bridge.

Naomi Doughty, project manager for the Environment Agency said: “Following on from a well-attended community drop-in event on 19 May, we’re pleased to announce the next phase of essential flood prevention work will begin from Monday.

“With Matlock Bridge being a scheduled monument, care has been taken to liaise with national and local heritage stakeholders in order to preserve and protect the historic value of the bridge.”

She added: “We’ve listened to local feedback and we will do everything we can to make sure the temporary highway is as aesthetically pleasing and in keeping with the local character of Matlock.

“We apologise in advance for any disruption caused by these works and we’re grateful for the patience and support of the local community.”

Following the collapse of a privately owned wall in February this year, the Environment Agency commissioned an immediate repair using more than 50 rock-filled bags to shore up the structure.

Further prevention work and geological surveys were carried out in April, with an additional 100 two-tonne bags craned in to reduce erosion and limit potential damage to an adjacent Environment Agency flood wall while the long-term solution was planned.