WORK to clean up an area of land contaminated by heavy industry is due to start this month.

The ground, at Stane Gardens in Shotts, was fenced off after contamination was discovered by North Lanarkshire Council in February 2011.

There were fears that the clean-up bill could exceed £4 million, but the figure will be closer to £1.4m.

Contaminants found at the site were consistent with it having previously been the location of an iron works and a tar factory.

The council has agreed a programme of work with the Scottish Environment Protection Agency to clean up the site.

As well as removing topsoil, which is expected to be completed by March, a new reed bed and run-off will be created to alleviate any flooding issues.

The second part of the remediation – to be funded jointly by the council and SEPA – will see South Calder River, which runs via a culvert beneath the site, reinstated above ground to provide a water feature for Stane Gardens.

The final design for the site will include riverside walkways.