Work on the final repairs to Tadcaster Bridge by North Yorkshire County Council is progressing after the road bridge across the River Wharfe reopened last month following its collapse during floods over Christmas 2015.
Clearance of vegetation from the bridge and repointing of the original masonry is expected to be completed this week. This will be followed by removing the piles below the water line and clearing as much material as possible from beneath the arches without adversely affecting the bridge’s foundations. None of this work will affect the public’s use of the bridge. Once the contractor’s compound is removed, the car park will be resurfaced to repair any damage. The County Council is developing a lighting scheme for the bridge that will complement the structure’s architecture, subject to a planning amendment.
At the same time, work is well under way to remove the footbridge hired by the County Council as an interim solution to connect the east and west of Tadcaster. The footbridge closed at the start of March after Tadcaster Bridge was reopened. The process of dismantling and removing it is expected to be completed by its owners by next month.
County Councillor Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Highways, said: “Residents and visitors to Tadcaster have been able to enjoy the rebuilt, widened bridge since it reopened six weeks ago, and it is great that we are close to putting the finishing touches to the work.
“We will continue to work with other agencies regarding efforts to protect Tadcaster from flooding. We take our role as lead flood authority seriously and our involvement in producing a review of the Christmas 2015 flooding is a priority. This review will draw together the work done by the Environment Agency and Yorkshire Water to make sure all the key issues are considered. The County Council will work with the Environment Agency and Yorkshire Water to establish what measures could be introduced to reduce flood risk, how those should be prioritised and what funding may be available.”
It is expected that the report will be published at the end of May.
County Councillor Chris Metcalfe, Member for Tadcaster, said: “I welcome the flood risk review, which is essential for the town. The work on Tadcaster Bridge is part of the solution, but it does not stop there. I know there are further flooding issues in the town and other agencies must be challenged to play their part in resolving these. I look forward to the report to see what measures the Environment Agency and Yorkshire Water can introduce to reduce flood risks.”