WORK to restore cobbles and the road surface across a medieval market square has begun following a three-year wait.

Contractors are expected to have completed 80 per cent of the Hambleton District Council project to restore areas of Thirsk Market Place before Easter, with the remainder of the work being finished in April.

Concerns over the state and appearance of the market square’s road surface have arisen after areas of damaged cobbles have been temporarily replaced with Tarmac, while the work has repeatedly been set back by a range of technical issues.

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Councillor Derek Adamson told a meeting of Thirsk Town Council that while the cost of the project was £100,000, he was confident there would be sufficient cobbles to restore the square’s historic character.

He said the district council had also agreed to a yearly maintenance plan for the square.

Fellow Thirsk district councillor Andrew Robinson said the work would be phased, starting at the Golden Fleece end of the square, and the affected stallholders at the Monday and Saturday markets would be moved temporarily to the area beside the Black Bull pub.

Councillor Janet Watson, who has campaigned for the repairs, told the meeting: “I am really pleased that they have started the work, but I am very disappointed that it has taken so long for it to go ahead because it was first discussed about three years ago.

“I know inflation is very low, but with the amount of cash that was first mentioned we are not going to get as much for our money as when it was first envisaged.”