Norfolk's last remaining vehicle ferry is to close for several weeks as essential maintenance work is carried out.

Reedham Ferry provides the only road crossing of the River Yare between Great Yarmouth and Norwich, saving users a journey of more than 30 miles.

Trains are able to cross further downstream near the centre of Reedham.

The ferry closure will mean the nearest crossings for traffic will be the A47 at Postwick and the Breydon Bridge in Yarmouth.

The 40-year-old vessel must undergo inspections and repairs every three years to maintain its operating licence.

The ferry is being detached from its chains this week and towed to the yard in Oulton Broad where it was built. The works are expected to take five to six weeks.

Great Yarmouth Mercury: The Reedham Ferry's last journey will be at 10pm tonightThe Reedham Ferry's last journey will be at 10pm tonight (Image: James Bass)

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David Archer, who owns the ferry, said on its website: "From January 9, 2024 the chain ferry will temporarily be leaving us for its refit in Oulton Broad.

"We fully appreciate this is a ‘pain in the neck’ for our regular customers not having the convenience of the ferry for a few weeks but needs must."

A crossing has existed in Reedham since the early 17th century.

It was initially hand-wound but it became motorised in 1950.

The current vessel was built in 1984. It can carry up to two vehicles on each crossing, as well as cyclists and pedestrians.

The Archer family took over the ferry in 1949 and three generations have operated the crossing.