Today, I met with Roads Minister, Richard Holden, at the Galley Hill landslip site in Swanscombe.
Galley Hill Road has been shut since part of the carriageway, pavement and chalk cliff, collapsed last Easter. This has caused major disruption for local residents who have had to use a long diversion while a solution is found to fix the problem.
Since the incident in April, Kent County Council, which is responsible for roads and Thames Water, which is responsible for the water pipe, have been in discussions about who is liable. Part of the land may also have separate owners.
During the visit, Mr Holden saw the huge damage caused by the landslip and was briefed on the ongoing issues.
I asked the Roads Minister, Richard Holden, to come to Galley Hill to see the collapse for himself because we can't have years of wrangling between Thames Water and KCC getting in the way of rebuilding. We need to find a solution. The road closure is causing huge inconvenience for local residents and so this issue needs to be dealt with as soon as possible.
Kent County Councillor for Swanscombe and Greenhithe, Peter Harman, Swanscombe Deputy Town Mayor, Councillor Ann Duke and Toby Howe, Strategic Resilience Manager at KCC, were also at the meeting.
Mr Howe said: “We are doing everything we can, we are working with the landowners, and we are looking at alternatives if the road can’t be repaired. We are working closely with the community. We are looking at all the options. Minister Richard Holden’s visit has been really positive and shows the Government is taking this seriously as well.”