Work to repair a hole which has opened up on a busy road “may take some time”, council bosses have warned.

Part of the A41 at Quarry Lane bridge, Christleton, has collapsed, meaning a stretch of the road is down to one lane with temporary traffic signals in place.

The hole appeared during an afternoon of heavy rain in the area on Tuesday last week It was caused by a sub-soil ‘wash-out’ beneath the carriageway, which came about due to a burst water main close by.

The water leak is also pushing through into a brick chamber located in the road, where a steady stream of water is now flowing into the foul sewer approximately 5.5 metres under the surface.

Water companies, the Canal and River Trust and Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWaC) have been working together to resolve the problem.

CWaC’s cabinet member for environment Karen Shore said: “Water samples have been taken for testing, ground-penetrating radar surveys have been arranged to establish the size of the void under the carriageway and the council’s highways contractor, Ringway, has excavated material from the surrounding area.

“Engineers are currently working on a method to stem the flow of water, fix the chamber and get the road back into full use as soon as possible. However, it is essential that this is done correctly and may take some time.”

For safety reasons, temporary traffic signals are being used to control the traffic while half the carriageway in closed, causing delays in the area at busy times. The police are being kept informed as the incident may have an impact elsewhere on the highways network.

“We doing all we can to resolve the situation as quickly as possible,” added Cllr Shore.

No date for when the road will reopen fully has been given.