THE long-awaited repair of a sink hole that has plagued Knutsford for three years has hit technical problems.

Engineers started to mend the big cavity on Toft Road between the Curzon cinema and the railway station early in September.

The ‘unusually complex’ repair was expected to take two months.

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However, it could now be mid-November before the giant hole is finally fixed.

Knutsford Guardian: Challenges around an old tunnel have delayed the repair of the Toft Road sinkholeChallenges around an old tunnel have delayed the repair of the Toft Road sinkhole (Image: Supplied)

The problem has been exacerbated because the collapsed pavement is above an underground tunnel.

It is understood that the link was built to transport prisoners under the road when the Courthouse was a gaol, in the early nineteenth century.

A spokesman for United Utilities said: “The work to repair a sinkhole on Toft Road has been complex, with challenges around an old tunnel, the weather and ground conditions.

“A design has been agreed with Cheshire East Council and our engineers are working hard to have everything completed around mid-November.”

Knutsford Town Council shared some more details on social media after asking United Utilities for an update.

The post reads: “The works have been delayed due to finding a significant amount of concrete as the excavations took place and the need to build a cofferdam into the embankment to keep the site dry whilst works take place.

“They have been searching for the outlet into a combined sewer which the tunnel drains into.

“They have not found one and concluded that there is no outlet.

“The foul and surface water entering the tunnel were draining to the ground.

“They are now developing a design to agree with Cheshire East Council for the permanent solution and repair.”

In a joint statement from Cheshire East Council and United Utilities, in September, Cllr Craig Browne, chairman of the council’s highways and transport committee, said: “United Utilities and Cheshire East Council are working together to resolve the hole on Toft Road in Knutsford.

“We expect it will take a further eight weeks to make a full repair as we need to work around a historic tunnel that runs under the road at this location, which has been making this repair unusually complex.

“There may be some traffic disruption while it progresses.

“We apologise for any inconvenience this causes and can assure residents and motorists that this issue will be resolved soon.”