Weight restrictions are being put in place on a historic coastal bridge in a bid to protect it from further deterioration.
Lynemouth bridge on the C110 is now 90 years old and recent inspection and survey work has shown the bridge is in poor condition and under strength, as a result it is no longer capable of carrying heavier vehicles.
Testing has shown a high level of salt build up within certain parts of the bridge structure which can’t be removed. The bridge is beyond economical repair or strengthening, with a weight restriction on vehicles currently the only realistic option.
The County Council is now proposing to apply a three-tonne weight restriction with a 6ft 6 width restriction to the bridge to prevent access to large and heavy vehicles.
This will slow the deterioration of the bridge and allow it to remain open for most users. A five-mile diversion route via Ellington and Cresswell will be introduced for larger vehicles.
At the same time the council is planning to carry out some improvements for cyclists and pedestrians around the bridge.
Councillor Glen Sanderson, Cabinet Member for Environment and Local Services, said: “We are sorry if this inconveniences anyone as we don’t want to restrict traffic on any bridge but a detailed analysis of the structure has meant we need to take these measures to allow it to stay open.
“Most road users will still be able to go across the bridge as normal, it just affects the much larger vehicles which the bridge simply can’t sustain.
“We’re also taking this opportunity to improve the cycling and walking access around the bridge as we know it’s a popular coastal route.”
Formal notices to publicise the proposed weight restriction and diversionary route will be issued shortly and pending the outcome of this process it is expected that the new restrictions will come into force in around six weeks time.