TRAFFIC and parking disruption is set to hit Rawtenstall as a £7million sewer scheme gets under way.

New underground storm water chambers, and new sections of sewer, will be built on land off the A682, in Bank Street and St Mary’s Way, in Bacup Road near the junction with Bury Road, in Ilex Mill car park, off Fall Barn Road, and under the car park opp-osite Highfield Road.

There will also be new manholes, a control kiosk, and an outfall into Limey Water installed, before next winter.

The aim is to help keep Limey Water and the River Irwell clean.

A United Utilities spokesman said: “We understand this type of work can be a pain and we are working closely with Lancashire Highways and local stakeholders to minimise the disruption.

“To complete our work safely, we will need to remove some trees and put some traffic management in place.”

During the work, people will no longer be able to use the United Utilities compound to park in.

Lower Bank Street car park will be closed until August. Alternative council car parking has been made available at James Street, and at the top of Bank Street.

There will be no vehicle access into the bottom of Bank Street from St Mary’s Way, and traffic manag-ement will be in place.

The spokesman added: “There will be a temporary road closure in place which we expect will be required for a few months.

“Diversions will be clearly signposted via Bocholt Way. Buses will be diverted around Kay Street and Bank Street.

“There will be a reduction in available car parking spaces during our work.

“We’ll ensure that there is alternative car parking available nearby for residents.

“We will need to complete some work on Bacup Road which will require temporary traffic lights.

“We thank everyone for their patience while we’re carrying out this important work and will provide regular letter updates to the local community.”

Camden Blomerley, secretary of Rossendale Civic Pride, said: “The work will undoubtably cause huge problems. United Utilities is trying to do its best to minimise the disruption but, at the end of the day, it’s trying to fit a quart into a pint pot.

“Businesses and commuters heading for the M60 and M66 are probably going to struggle. Civic Pride is going to makeover Bank Street after the work has finished and make it much better than it is now.”