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Archive September 09-17 2000


The piling machine, drilling the through the central pier from the top of the bridge. Each pile will go through the central pier and into the river bed to a depth of 16 to 18 metres.

This operation is expected to take 4 weeks to complete.

A rock bit of the type being used to drill through the central pier.

17/09 - Left
Another piling machine on site to speed up the drilling operation. When the central pier is stable the bridge should be open for light traffic. Possibly by early October.

17/09 - Right
This section through the damaged bridge shows what looks like steel railway tracks lying across each other - presumably to give the bridge added strength.

NYCC Press Release 07-9-00

PILING work has started to repair the damaged central pier of Richmond's Mercury Bridge.

A rig has been set up on top of the bridge and piling will take place to strengthen the pier. Once the central pier has been stabilised, repairs will start to the bottom of the pier where it sits in the river.

The work is expected to take up to four weeks to complete.

During, and after the work has been completed, a detailed assessment will be carried out into the possibility of opening the bridge to light traffic and pedestrians during October using a traffic light system.

This will involve installing a quick bridge on the existing structure and a one-way traffic system. The quick bridge will be delivered to the site shortly to prepare it for installation.

An update on the current position was given at a meeting attended by Mike Moore, North Yorkshire's director of environmental services and district councillors, the town council, neighbouring parish councils together with local business delegates. It was chaired by John Blackie, a county councillor and leader of Richmondshire District Council.

Mike Moore, North Yorkshire's director of environmental services, said: "Safety for the contractors working on the site is paramount. However, extended working hours have been put in at critical stages to keep the whole programme on schedule. We will continue to operate in that way as and when working conditions permit."

A key feature of the reconstruction programme has been the close co-operation which has existed through everyone involved in the project including North Yorkshire County Council, Richmondshire District Council and the contractors.

Since the bridge collapse the county council has been providing a free bus service linking both sides of the river. That free bus service will continue until the bridge has been fully repaired.

At a meeting for County & District Councillors in Swale House on 1 Sept, Mr Mike Moore, North Yorkshire's director of environmental services gave an in depth progress report on the works at Station (Mercury) Bridge. The main points are set out below.

  • The work has progressed according plan, the steel placement was as a great success - the bridge is now supported.
  • Pre-Grouting of the bridge central pier is to start on Monday 4 Sept - this binds existing stones and loose material together.
  • Full piling operation is to start after this and should be completed by October 6th
  • A temporary bridge will be placed on the Station bridge spanning the damage area - middle October allowing light vehicles, Max 7.5t, and pedestrians to cross.
  • New Stone is expected to be introduced to the central pier in the second week in October
  • Estimated Cost is now between £1.2m and £1.3m
  • The Department of transport has promised £700,000 towards the costs. NYCC will be looking to increase this amount.
  • Bridge expected to be reopened by 12 December.


Contact: Brian Jones at County Hall, ext 2811

NYCC Press Release 14-9-00

The repair works to Richmond's Mercury Bridge are progressing well to date, and are on target to achieve the completion on time. The current fuel shortage has had a minimal effect upon the works, and all the partners involved in the reconstruction will endeavour to ensure that the works continue to progress as far as possible, although if shortages continue delays may be inevitable.

Piling work is in progress to stabilise the central river pier, and a detailed assessment of the structure is being carried out with regard to the possibility of installing a lightweight temporary bridge over the damaged carriageway. The installation of the bridge cannot proceed until work to stabilise the damaged river pier is complete.

When the lightweight bridge is in place pedestrians, and vehicles weighing less than seven and a half tonnes will be able to use the bridge. The traffic will be single line controlled by traffic signals, and there will be a maximum width restriction of 2.4 metres for vehicles. Vehicles over seven and a half tonnes and or greater than 2.4 metres wide will have to continue using the sign diversion routes. It is planned that the lightweight bridge will be in place ready for use at the beginning of October.

The free bus service will continue to operate after the installation of the lightweight bridge.

Contact: Brian Jones at County Hall ext 2811

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