Future of a popular Bristol cycle route and footpath has been secured

Published on 11/09/2018

Significant repair work for highway structures around Bristol’s waterways approved at Cabinet.

The future of a widely used bridge and popular cycle route and footpath has been secured following last night’s cabinet meeting (4 September).

At the meeting, funding was approved to begin essential refurbishment repairs to Redcliffe Bridge and the structural stabilisation of the river wall which supports the Chocolate Path and historic railway.

Following structural, mechanical and electrical investigations into the condition of Redcliffe Bridge (which has not been fully operational since 2015) it has been estimated that £3million will be needed to refurbish it and bring it back into operational use. The bridge is part of a main route into the city centre and, when operational, also allows for boats to travel through the harbour. At the moment the bridge is not safe to lift for general maritime use.

The Chocolate Path, which is a popular walking and cycling route, has been partially closed since 2016 as it is currently slowly subsiding into the river. In order to reopen it and make the path safe to use, a budget of £5million worth of capital funding has been allocated to stabilise the wall and stop any further subsidence of the path and historic railway.

Cllr Mhairi Threlfall, Cabinet Member for Transport said:

“We need to take action now so that we can protect these important historical landmarks around our city’s famous waterways.  This work is essential for looking after these important structural elements of our highway network, keeping them working and stopping parts completely slipping away into the river.

If we do not act now these costs are likely to rise substantially.  We expect that work will start next year and we will keep commuters updated for any road closures that may happen as a result of this work.”

Up to £3million funding was agreed for the refurbishment of the Redcliffe Bridge and up to £5million for the stabilisation of the river retaining wall supporting the Chocolate Footpath and historic railway.

The work is due to begin within the next financial year.