A COUNCILLOR fearing for the safety of his constituents says it’s only a matter of time before a sinkhole appears in their street.

Water has been gushing from the rear gardens of properties on Fountains Way, Oswaldtwistle, onto neighbouring Tower Street, causing damage to pavements and creating slip hazards for residents.

According to councillors and residents in the area, the leak has been persistent for more than a year, with no authority being able to take responsibility for it.

Cllr Glen Harrison, who represents St Oswald's Ward, said his constituents were angry and wanted answers: “There has been a lot of effort to find the location of the leak.

“It’s been running like a river down Tower Street for months damaging the road and pavement.

“Residents are stressed and angry - there’s green algae growing where the water has been which is going to cause slip hazards, and people are fearful a sinkhole may appear as the water is now running underneath the road.”

Cllr Harrison believes there may be a culvert running under Tower Street, which comes from Fountains Way and heads down towards the canal.

United Utilities were called to the site last month.

A spokesperson for the water company said: “We went out to Tower Street and took chlorine samples from the leaking water on one section of the road.

“The samples came back negative which means the water isn’t coming from one of our assets.

“A resident told one of our engineers that the water has been running like this for years and gets worse when the weather gets worse.

“We’re sending another engineer out to take a look at Fountains Way but as far as we can see, it’s not our asset so it will be passed back to Lancashire County Council.”

Nicola Grunshaw, who lives in Tower Street, said whatever the source, the leak needed to be fixed before it costs the council more in damage claims.

She said: “Apparently it’s been running like this for eight years. It’s unbelievable. Everyone just keeps passing the buck."

A spokesperson for the county council said: “We’re aware of this issue and our highways team will be attending the site to investigate further.”