Call for action to repair bridge

A CAMPAIGNER in St Ives is demanding that the county council takes action over the deteriorating state of the town s famous river bridge. Peggy Seamark, who works in the town s Norris Museum, says that she has noticed severe deterioration in the Grade I l

A CAMPAIGNER in St Ives is demanding that the county council takes action over the deteriorating state of the town's famous river bridge.

Peggy Seamark, who works in the town's Norris Museum, says that she has noticed severe deterioration in the Grade I listed building.

Mrs Seamark said: "There are noticeable cracks on the town side of the bridge and a number of the bricks, particular down low, are deteriorating.

"It dates back nearly 600 years and is one of only four bridges in the country with a chapel and the only one with a chapel mid-stream."

It is believed that salt spread on the bridge has been sprayed onto walls by vehicles, advancing the deterioration.

The county council has said that work has been ordered and should begin in the next two months.

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Stephen McGee, assistant bridge engineer at Cambridgeshire County Council, admitted that previous work carried out on the bridge had not been up to scratch.

He said: "The last work carried out on the bridge was a few years ago and it seems the contractors did not use the correct mix for the mortar.

"This time around, the contractors we are using are specialists and we are currently in negotiations with them for work to begin.

"Work has been delayed by problems at the contractor's end but we should be in a position to start work inside two months.

"Work will be carried out on the worst-affected parts of the bridge, notably the lower third of each wall."

Repair work will be carried out on one side of the bridge at a time to ensure it can remain open for use.

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