A MAJOR drainage project is set to start which when complete will help to alleviate flooding in an area of Delph.

Work will begin on September 16 to construct a surface water highway drain in Delph, along Huddersfield Road, Gatehead Avenue and Lark Hill Lane.

The council successfully applied to the Environment Agency for more than £635,000 of funding for the scheme after a number of properties along Huddersfield Road and Gatehead Avenue flooded.

Due to the location of the drain in the centre of the highway it will be necessary to close a section of Huddersfield Road for a period of 28 weeks, so the work can be carried out safely, the council said.

Local diversions via Huddersfield Road, Delph New Road, Dobcross New Road, Standedge Road and Huddersfield Road will be clearly signed, however motorists are asked to give themselves extra time, especially during peak times.

Transport for Greater Manchester and First Bus have both been consulted and letters have been sent to residents and businesses immediately affected.

Pedestrian and vehicle access to businesses will be maintained and pedestrian access to residential properties will be maintained.

Cllr Ateeque Ur Rehman, Oldham Council’s cabinet member for neighbourhood services, said: “There is a history of flooding in this area, so we have identified it as a priority area for a flood risk management scheme.

“We know that closing a main road is never ideal, but our highways engineers have undertaken detailed surveys, and this is the only way the work can be carried out.

“This drainage work is vital and once it is finished it will hopefully mean properties in this are no longer under the threat of flooding and people no longer face the threat of losing their belongings.”