Work is almost complete on a collapsed culvert that has caused years of misery for residents after their homes were constantly being flooded.

In 2012, following flash flooding and freak downpours, a number of houses on Birch Hall Avenue, Darwen, were flooded to such an extent that water was freely running in through the back door and out the front.

And when the Boxing Day floods hit in 2016, and one couple's house flooded for the fourth time, causing thousands of pounds worth of damage, they demanded to be moved by their housing association.

Darwen councillor, Stephanie Brookfield said: "I have been pushing for this work to be done for a few years now after I was contacted by residents that lived on Birch Hall Avenue saying all their possessions had been ruined by the flooding and they had been forced to go and live with relatives."

An investigation by Blackburn with Darwen's drainage department revealed that the culvert had collapsed and the masonry section wasn't able to cope with high flows of water and that was what was causing the flooding of several properties, as well as resulting in water running out onto the road.

Cllr Brookfield continued: "For the last couple of years I've been very mindful of the constant flow of water across the carriageway and more so during the colder weather when at times the water has frozen and become very hazardous.

"I've ensured for the last couple of winters that this part of Birch Hall Avenue is gritted as matter of priority."

In 2017, £40,600 was granted by Blackburn with Darwen council for an investigation to determine the preferred scheme to reduce the flooding in Birch Hall Avenue and in August last year excavation work finally started.

This week, the council issued a statement to announce that the repairs were almost finished.

A Blackburn with Darwen Council spokesperson said: "The work is mainly complete in terms of pipework, and the fences are due to be removed over the next few weeks.

"The gardens will be finished in spring 2019 when landscaping is able to be completed and the seeds take shape."

Cllr Brookfield added: "Finally we will have a positive outcome for the residents that have been flooded and a safer environment for cars and pedestrians in the surrounding area."