Progress report on bridge works

THE old bridge at Vicars Hall on the Bridgewater Canal has now been demolished and work is ongoing to construct the replacement, writes Colin Wareing.

Contractors, Harry Fairclough construction of Warrington are in the process of installing 80 concrete piles for the new bridge. There will 40 piles on each side of the canal. The pilling machine was drilling down to a depth of 22.5m as this photo was taken.

PHOTO: COLIN WAREING, COLIN & CAROLE’S CREATIONS

The new bridge will be bigger than the ‘Bailey’ bridge it is replacing with the capacity to allow 40 tonne lorries to cross, while the deck will be a bit higher than before allowing a bit more air draught for boats navigating this length of the canal.

A temporary road way has been constructed by filling in the Bridgewater Canal near Astley in Greater Manchester. This picture shows the work, which is in connection with a proposed local housing development, from just above water level.

The original plan was to do this work over the winter period starting at the end of October 2016, with completion being completed by the end of February 2017, so that there would be minimum disruption to boating traffic along the canal.

This stretch of canal is an important link between the north and south of the inland waterways system, enabling navigation from the Leeds & Liverpool canal in Wigan with the Rochdale Canal in Manchester and the Trent and Mersey at Preston Brook.

However work didn’t start until February 13 and is now scheduled to finish in late May.

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