Home News The Graben works and Leeson Road, ahead of schedule

The Graben works and Leeson Road, ahead of schedule

Isle of Wight Council reported today
Island Roads and the Isle of Wight Council can offer some positive news on the ongoing issues affecting access in and out of Ventnor. Both organisations have been working with various partner agencies to resolve the current issues affecting the town and can now provide updates in three areas. Safety work that will allow Gills Cliff Road in Ventnor to re-open will begin shortly while plans for 85-metre boreholes at Leeson Road are advancing with this specialist work – which will help provide data needed to inform a decision on re-opening the road – possibly beginning within weeks.
As the further evidence from the boreholes are gathered and analysed, this will enable the decision to be made, whether to road is re-opened either fully or partially, in the autumn. A council spokesman said: “We fully understand the problems being faced by the Ventnor community as a result of recent events and we have been working hard with numerous agencies and partners to find resolutions to what are difficult and highly technical issues. “Our intention remains to re-open all these important routes as soon as we are confident it is safe to do so and I am glad to say that while there is still work to be done and issues to be overcome, we are making steady progress. “The progress made this week by Southern Water at Newport Road is the most immediate bit of good news but we are also moving forward on the other more complex issues at Leeson Road and Gills Cliff Road also. “This work will continue and I can assure residents that we are all pulling together with the common aim of improving access in the town as soon as it is possible. Local company DDGA has been appointed to deliver the Gills Cliff Road scheme which is hoped will be completed by early August. Gills Cliff Road has been closed for safety reasons since a significant rockfall sent tonnes of debris spilling onto the highway in February.
Extra works under way
The forthcoming work will see large sections or the rockface covered by heavy duty steel netting designed to prevent further debris from falling onto the highway. The solution has been agreed by Island Roads and the Isle of Wight Council following extensive surveys of the area. One challenge has been to identify areas within the rockface where it is safe to anchor the netting without causing further weaknesses. An Island Roads spokesman added: “Since the initial rockfall, we have been working closely with the council to agree a suitable solution that will enable us to safely re-open the road. “I’m pleased to say we have now instructed a local company who have worked extensively in the local area. “It is difficult to give definitive timescales due to factors such as the unstable nature of this site and the need to source bespoke materials but we are all doing our level best to complete the work and re-open the road as soon as we can.” Island Roads also confirmed it was working with Ventnor Fringe organisers to assist with any specific transportation issues they may be facing in the run up to the event.
Plans for the three 85-metre boreholes in the Leeson Road area are progressing and these could be drilled in August. The purpose of these is twofold: firstly to help understand the nature of the underlying geology in the area and secondly to allow monitoring equipment to be installed deep underground. The data gathered from these devices will add to that already being collected and will assist Island Roads and the council in the aim of creating an early warning system that will be pivotal to the intended re-opening Leeson Road. Work on possible models for an early warning system is already underway. Free 1 hour parking offer.
The free one hour parking scheme introduced in Ventnor this week will continue until Friday, 19 July. The Isle of Wight Council is currently offering motorists free one hour parking at Central, Eastern Esplanade, The Grove and La Falaise car parks. People must still get a ticket from the machine and display it in their windscreen to benefit from the offer.
The scheme aims to help businesses in the town while Southern Water carry out essential repairs to its infrastructure on Newport Road
Ventnor Town Council also offers free parking at its Dudley Road, Pound Lane and Market Street car parks on Saturdays, between 10am and 4pm.

Isle of Wight Council Press release 28/06/24
29 June 2024
Last Updated
29 June 2024
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