A major engineering task to install a new gas main deep under a busy road in Winsford is expected to complete this weekend.
Engineers expect to finish the upgrade of a 2,400-metre section of an old metallic gas main that carries gas to heat thousands of local homes.
It is the latest stage of £3.5million investment by local gas network Cadent to replace – over 12 months – around 27,000 metres of mains in Winsford. Many of these date from the 1940s.
More than 87 per cent of the town’s 13,000 homes use gas for heating.
This latest phase in Middlewich Road came with challenges that included having to disrupt traffic on a busy A-road, discovering the main was buried much deeper than the plans indicated (needing extra safety measures for the workers) and very thick layers of tarmac situated over it.
Steven Twist, project manager, said: “We know this has been disruptive and understandably frustrating for people sat in queueing traffic.
“We really appreciate everyone’s patience while we finish upgrading such an old gas main and putting in place one that future-proofs gas supply for many generations.
“Our teams are working late into the night and the good news we can share today is that, by the weekend, we should complete all works in the carriageway and we can remove the temporary traffic lights on Middlewich Road.”
These underground pipes are reaching the end of their safe working lives and have been identified for replacement as part of a UK-wide programme.
Work began in Winsford last summer and teams have worked closely with Cheshire West and Chester Council to plan a programme that will see a total of 27km of pipes upgraded.
A dedicated team is in place to support customers in Winsford and answer queries during the upgrade work. They can be reached on 0345 450 8490.
Cadent is a gas network, the UK's biggest, with responsibility to maintain a network comprising more than 80,000 miles of underground gas mains and hundreds of above ground stations. These distribute gas safely to more than 11 million properties in an area stretching from the Lake District to London. Cadent also provides the 24/7, year-round gas emergency service for the same area.