'No quick fix' to stop A555 Airport Relief Road flooding

Image source, Danny Lawson/PA Wire
Image caption,
Industrial pumps were required to drain water from the A555 Manchester Airport link road, which was shut for several days in July and August

Stopping a major relief road from flooding repeatedly will take time, a council highways boss has admitted.

The A555 Manchester Airport Relief Road in Stockport - and the A34 near Alderley Edge - were both forced to close following heavy rain this summer.

Paul Traynor told Cheshire East Council the roads were designed to a "one in 30-year storm" standard but the weather had been "way in excess" of that.

Engineers were investigating new pumping or drainage solutions, he said.

A number of roads in east Cheshire were swamped in July and August when the equivalent of half a month's rain fell on the region in the space of 24 hours.

Industrial pumps were required to clear the water when two sections of the £290m Manchester Airport link road were deluged.

Mr Traynor, head of highways at Cheshire East Council, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that engineers were working to fix the problem but a solution was not imminent.

"We are now looking to see what enhancement we can do to cope with this volume of water that needs to be discharged," he added.

Image source, @SOCHESHIRE
Image caption,
The A34 Alderley Edge was flooded in late July 2019

This would involve pumping excess water off the road or finding new ways of draining the flooding.

Following further flooding in October, Stockport Council said it had replaced the pumps and removed silt from drainage tanks, but admitted "this was clearly not enough".

The A34 Alderley Edge bypass was also closed in July when the road became completely submerged.

Gully clearing

Meanwhile, a Cheshire East councillor has called for more action to clear gullies to prevent future flooding.

Peter Groves said: "We spent a huge amount of time and money on dealing with potholes and we have seen a substantial reduction and far fewer claims for damage.

"Shouldn't we now be concentrating on gully clearing and combatting flooding?"

Work has increased since this summer's flooding, with 6,600 gullies cleared across Poynton, Adlington and Bollington.

But councillors have called for gully-clearing work to be extended to other areas.

Cheshire East Council considered applying for funding under a government scheme which reimburses costs incurred from flooding, but withdrew its own request.