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Bridge safety must be looked at says Councillor Neil Sandison

January 13, 2019 4:36 PM
By Rugby Lib Dems

Neil Sandison bridges 1 (Jan 2019)Liberal Democrats Councillor for Eastlands Ward, Neil Sandison, is extremely concerned about the safe state of repair of the Great Central Railway bridges and has pressed for the issue to be looked at urgently by Rugby Borough Council's Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

Following representations from Councillors, residents, cycle users and nature conservationists a report was brought forward in 2008 requesting urgent funding for priority repairs to ensure public safety and continued repair of the bridge infrastructure.

Some initial repairs were carried out at the Bridge Street and Hillmorton Road Bridge. However, this was many years ago and every year since further action has been pushed down the Council's agenda of future years expenditure.

Councillor Neil Sandison is concerned that without detailed reports, structural surveys and a planned and delivered programme of works it is not possible to confirm how safe or otherwise the bridges are.

The Great Central Railway Bridges were built between 1894 and 1898. They are an integral part of Rugby's town centre infrastructure allowing access to Sustrans Route 41 and the Great Central cycle and walkway. Thousands of residents each year use the Great Central Way, and many enter it from Abbey/South Street through to Only Lane by Ashlawn Road.

The infrastructure roads across the track bed provide important access routes via the town centre to Clifton, Lower Hillmorton, Paddox, Hillmorton and Ashlawn. Furthermore, significant access is granted to the Southields Estate via Benn Street and Pytchley Road. Neil Sandison bridges 2 (Jan 2019)

Commenting, Councillor Neil Sandison (Eastlands), said:

"I'm very concerned that due diligence in terms of public safety is not being carried out by Rugby Borough Council. Public Safety for drivers' cyclists and walkers is paramount. I've repeatedly requested an up to date risk assessment, but at Cabinet on 7 January 2019 the works were pushed back again.

"It is no longer acceptable to allow further delays to repair without detailed explanation. Along with other Councillors I have called this issue in to be looked at by Scrutiny on 11 March 2019. After analysing the issue, we hope some remedial repairs can be carried out until some more substantive reconstruction work can in fact be initiated. The Council must now start to take this issue seriously."