It could be almost a month until repairs are carried out on a pavement damaged during stormy weather.

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The footpath in Stepshort, Belton, near the Stepshort dyke, was ripped apart on Christmas Eve when high winds brought down a row of conifer trees. The trees pulled down metal railings, which in turn pulled up the pavement.

On Monday, Essex & Suffolk Water engineers are due to replace a water main in Stepshort. It is an unrelated issue but the work is expected to last 20 days and means the footpath repair must be delayed.

Norfolk County Council cordoned off the pavement the day of the storm and while it was initially thought a gas main had been damaged, the gas board quickly confirmed no damage had been caused.

This week, a spokesman for the county council acknowledged it will be weeks before they can start work on the footpath.

“It is quite a complex job,” she said.

As well as waiting for the water works to finish, the spokesman added that the fallen conifer trees, which are on private land, will have to be carefully moved before Streetworks, the county council’s highways repair arm, can start its work.

Confirming the planned work, a spokesman for Essex & Suffolk Water said: “There will be a road closure in place on Stepshort road, Belton, from Monday for a necessary replacement of an 8in water main.

“Essex & Suffolk Water has worked to minimise disruption to customers and the public by putting up signs and sending letters to local residents informing them about the works.

“The short division and closure, agreed with Norfolk County Council, is expected to remain in place until the end of January with the completion of the whole replacement scheme in mid-February.”

The county council spokesman said the pavement repairs would start as soon as possible after the water work was complete. See www.norfolk.roadworks.org for a list of planned road closures.

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