Renewed offer to renovate bridge

TWO years have elapsed and still the director of a repair company has not had an answer to his offer to bring new life to Great Yarmouth's dilapidated Vauxhall bridge.

TWO years have elapsed and still the director of a repair company has not had an answer to his offer to bring new life to Great Yarmouth's dilapidated Vauxhall bridge.

But Ken Gibbs, who runs Protective Maintenance Systems in Hopton, has not given up hope he will get the nod to repaint the Grade II listed 156-year-old bridge which had the ignominy of featuring on the Grotbritain website for dirty places around the UK.

He was featured in the Mercury two years ago when he visited the bridge next to the railway station with councillors to assess what could be done to the bridge, which has been described as an “eyesore” by councillors.

Fears have also been raised it could be putting people off visiting the town because of it acts as a gateway for visitors stepping off trains at nearby Yarmouth station.


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But rather than pursuing the demolition option suggested by some councillors, he believed the bridge could be restored and has renewed his offer to carry out the restoration work himself.

He hoped to use staff from Anglia Skills Academy to carry out the work, providing much needed skills for youngsters employed by the academy who include youths on probation.

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“It could cost more to demolish the bridge and replace it with a new structure than to repair it. In truth I think we have lost a lot of our heritage recently and it would be a shame to lose the bridge as well. But there is no need for it because the majority of the bridge is still intact and serviceable provided somebody is prepared to spend the money,” Mr Gibbs said.

The borough council is due to decide on Monday whether to donate money towards a Norfolk County Council feasibility study looking into the options available for the bridge, owned by cycle charity Sustrans.

The cash would come from

�300,000 of lottery money the

borough has been given to spend on projects to improve the Runham Vauxhall area.

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