Subsidence-hit homes to be rebuilt

Houses are to be rebuilt.
Houses are to be rebuilt.

Houses within the Bayfield Estate at West Allotment will be rebuilt after they were demolished because of subsidence.

In total, 18 houses built by Bellway Homes in 2011 had to be demolished because of subsidence caused by old coal shafts.

Cracks started to appear in 2016 and then in October 2017, 18 were demolished.

A further 19 homes needed repair work after cracks appears in walls and floors. and residents were forced to move out of their homes with many others living on the 133 house estate raising concerns about house prices.

The Coal Board admitted liability and councillors were told that the coal shafts beneath the estate were bigger than initially thought.

Now councillors have voted to approve the rebuilding of the houses after some 4,000 tonnes of grout was used to stabilise the land.

North Tyneside Council planning committee chair Councillor Frank Lott said: ” I am sure you all saw this item with increased incredulity!”

Councillors were told that the land had now been stabilised with hundreds of holes drilled into the site then tonnes of grout poured into voids.

A report to the council said: “The wider Bayfield housing development commenced in 2007 and construction works were completed by 2012. In March 2016, it became apparent that ground movement was causing damage to residential properties at Bayfield.

“Following monitoring and investigation, this ground movement was established as being ‘probably’ as a result of historic coal mining activity.

“The Coal Authority accepted liability in August 2016 for a localised subsidence event at the estate. This event has affected a total of 37 dwellings: 18 dwellings have been demolished and 19 have been repaired.”

The houses will be replaced on a like for like basis and the layout of the houses won’t be different to those that were demolished.

As part of the planning conditions building work cannot begin until the council is presented with a report which confirms that the ground movement has stopped.

Laura Hill, Local Democracy Reporting Service