Bridge repair work planned at Hexham

Work is planned to restore and preserve the bridge over the river Tyne at Hexham, for the benefit of generations of future motorists, pedestrians and visitors to the town.

As part of Northumberland County Council’s three year masonry arch refurbishment programme, Hexham Bridge was identified as requiring renovation work.  

The work is necessary to both preserve the vital highway link to Hexham from the A69 and to ensure that the condition of the bridge is maintained.

Built in 1793 Hexham Bridge was the fifth bridge built within 30 years of each other, the previous ones all destroyed by flooding.  It is a nine arched stone bridge designed by engineer-architect Robert Mylne and is Grade II* listed for its historical importance.

To enable the council to effectively design and plan the work that is needed a number of investigation operations are planned on the bridge over the next few weeks.  The investigation work has been planned to ensure that disruption is kept to a minimum.  

Any work on top of the bridge will be undertaken overnight under traffic light control.

The traffic lights with single lane working will be in place between 8pm and 6am, after which they will be removed and both the highway and footways will be fully reopened.   

All other investigation work will be undertaken from beneath the bridge using access platforms to reach those areas of the bridge that need to be tested.

Once the investigation works have been completed, the information obtained will be used to inform the detailed design and allow the council to programme the main body of the work.  Key organisations will be informed about the planned work, and asked for their views.

The council is committing to ensuring that this important work is planned with any disruption to motorists kept to an absolute minimum, and further information will be published as soon as it is available.  It is not expected that there will be any full closure of the bridge during either phase.

Cllr Ian Swithenbank, cabinet member for local services at Northumberland County Council said:  “Many bridges across Northumberland are key to keeping important transport routes moving, and Hexham Bridge is a prime example of this.

“As a council we have established a programme of refurbishment to the masonry arches of bridges, ensuring that they are sound and secure for use for many years into the future.

“We have started to plan some refurbishment work on the bridge at Hexham, and will be carrying out investigations to determine exactly what is needed.

“Further information about the programme and timings will be published as soon as they is available, but we are committed to ensuring that they cause as little disruption to users as possible.”
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