SAFETY work on Queensbury Tunnel is due to start later this month, Highways England has confirmed.

The historic 1.4-mile tunnel is currently at the centre of a campaign to save it from abandonment to create a cycle route.

But Highways England says safety work must now be carried out to "reduce the risk to the community around the tunnel".

It will be done in two phases - the first phase is temporary to provide short-term strengthening at the tunnel's most vulnerable locations.

A Highways England spokesperson said: “The planning application process to carry out phase two of the safety work, which includes infilling of the seven ventilation shafts and sections of the tunnel at each portal, started in May of this year.” The Department for Transport says it remains willing to transfer ownership of the tunnel to another statutory body.