Icy weather has led to a 20ft-deep hole being uncovered under a Brighton street.

It is believed frozen temperatures overnight weakened tarmac over a Victorian sewer or trench on Temple Street causing part of the road to collapse.

The hole was initially reported by worried Sussex Police to Brighton and Hove City Council on Monday night (December 10).

The area, off Western Road, was immediately cordoned off.

Council strategic director Geoff Raw today (December 11) said: “The police reported a hole in Temple Street to the council’s out-of-hours’ team last night at which stage it was quite small but showed there was only a thin layer of tarmac over a void.

“This was made safe and the road closed with traffic control barriers.

“The hole has since been opened up by the council’s road work contractors and is now around 4ft to 6ft wide and between 15 to 20ft deep.

“The council is investigating and has closed off Temple Street from its junction with Western Road northwards for approximately 30m.

“It looks like it is an old trench or sewer below the road, possibly dating back to Victorian times and the likely cause of the sudden collapse is the recent wet weather and severe frost which the city experienced last night.

“We are working to ensure the repair is carried out as soon as possible and we have suspended the one-way restriction in Temple Street to maintain access for residents into Montpelier Place.”

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