Following last week’s jubilation when Tadcaster Bridge re-opened to traffic, North Yorkshire County Council is now returning to the task of completing the bridge structure and works below the waterline.

Thousands from the community turned out last Friday (Feb 3) to watch the bridge’s reopening just over a year after Tadcaster was cut in two when the bridge collapsed due to the force of flood water before New Year 2016.

Tadcaster’s young people and school children processed over the bridge accompanied by local MP Nigel Adams and Communities Secretary Sajid Javid who cut the ribbon to declare the bridge open.

With all the historic masonry work and road over the bridge now complete, the County Council is returning with its contractors to finish works in the river over the weeks to come:

  • Finish and cut piling work down to river bed level;
  • Re-establish concrete collars around the pier bases;
  • Remove all the falsework from the bridge arches (there will be a temporary road closure of  Tadcaster Bridge 11pm Sat 11 Feb to 6am Sun 12 Feb to aid removal of the arch falsework from the river.  Engineers are hoping to maintain pedestrian access. A signed diversion will be in place.)
  • Landscape the river banks;
  • Tidy up all the bridge’s masonry work
  • Tidy up the whole site area

With the opening of the historic bridge to traffic and pedestrians, the County Council will no longer have the expense of hiring the temporary footbridge, which will shortly be dismantled and collected by its owners.

“We have completed the major milestone in getting the bridge open to traffic” said County Councillor Don Mackenzie, North Yorkshire’s Executive Member for Highways, “but we have some finishing works to do so will be back on site over the coming weeks.

“The main thing is that the town is reconnected with a better and safer bridge and can now get on with its day to day business.

“A major, complex job like this would have taken two years of planning and construction in normal times, but because the town was cut in two we have pulled out all the stops to reopen the bridge in just over half that time.  I wish to thank the construction team and all the people in many different organisations who have made this possible.

“The whole nation was able to share last Friday’s wonderful and celebratory occasion in Tadcaster which was broadcast far and wide and which will be remembered in the community for years to come“

The 18th century grade two listed bridge has been reconstructed and widened with £3m from the Government and £1.4m from the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Enterprise Partnership.

Pictures show:

  • The completed masonry work on Tadcaster Bridge;
  • A contractor finishes the lining work in the last minutes before the bridge reopened;
  • Huge crowds celebrate the opening with Communities Secretary Sajid Javid and local MP Nigel Adams;