**Reopened at 9am Tuesday 10 October**
The historic Bubwith bridge has reopened following £1m of improvements – two weeks earlier than planned.
The single-track road bridge has undergone a major repair and strengthening scheme by East Riding of Yorkshire Council which unavoidably closed the bridge for what was originally planned to last 15 weeks.
But thanks to a smooth and successful engineering project, without uncovering any hidden issues, the council’s contractors have been able to complete the work in 13 weeks.
The 85m-long (almost 280ft) stone bridge carries the A163, between Holme on Spalding Moor and Selby, over the River Derwent and is controlled by traffic lights.
The Grade II listed structure, built in 1798, was badly damaged in a road accident in September 2022, which uncovered underlying weaknesses in the structure.
The council had to carry out emergency work to ensure the bridge was safe and structurally sound for the future.
Councilor Paul West, the council’s portfolio holder for environment and transport, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be able to reopen this bridge two weeks early.
“I’m sure the residents of Bubwith and the surrounding area are extremely pleased the work is finished and the bridge can finally reopen to traffic.
“We had no option but to close the bridge to carry out these repairs and I want to thank the local residents and local drivers for being very patient with us while the work was carried out.
“We know this has been a difficult time for them, but they have been very supportive and understood this was about making the bridge safe again for years to come.
“I want to commend our civil engineering team and our contractors Esh Construction for being so accommodating and carrying out an impressive repair scheme in a shorter time frame.”
The council had already arranged for the scheme to be shortened from 20 weeks to 15 weeks, at the request of residents.
Due to the age and listed status of the bridge, the repairs carried out had to be sympathetic to the existing structure and its surroundings and required a specialist workforce and materials.
The work was carried out by council contractors Esh Construction.
The 13-week emergency repair and strengthening scheme began in early July and involved:
In order to further support villagers during the closure, the council took a number of actions including:
Steven Garrigan, divisional director at Esh Construction, said: “The closure of Bubwith bridge has undoubtedly had a significant impact on the local community, and from the outset we understood the importance of completing the essential repair works as quickly as possible.
“The progress on site is testament to the collaborative efforts of our client, site team and sub-contractors which has enabled us to complete the scheme ahead of programme.
“Over half of the contract value has been re-invested within 20 miles of the site through our commitment to procuring local suppliers and sub-contractors where possible to do so, given the specialist nature of the trades required.”