Herring Bridge: Great Yarmouth crossing shut again as council tackles 'teething troubles'

The multi-million pound bridge will remain closed over the weekend and into next week, the council said. Credit: ITV News Anglia

A new multi-million pound bridge, which has shut twice in the six weeks since it opened, will close until further notice as engineers wrestle with its "teething troubles."

A "technical issue" caused the £121 million Herring Bridge in Great Yarmouth to be stuck upright on 14 March at 11am.

Later that day, a similar issue arose forcing it to shut again at 4pm.

Faults with the bridge first became apparent when it closed on 3 February - just two days after it opened.

Norfolk County Council announced the bascule bridge over the river Yare will be closed over the weekend and into next week to fix its latest issues.

A spokesperson from Norfolk County Council said: "Some teething troubles are to be expected on a project of this complexity which is why we have an extended operation and maintenance contract in place.

"We apologise for any inconvenience and thank the public for their continued patience whilst we work to bring the bridge back into use."

Bridge users are being advised to find alternative routes. Credit: ITV News Anglia

The council are advising drivers, cyclists and pedestrians to find alternative routes while engineers work on resolving the issue.

The council say the bridge will be closed into next week Credit: ITV News Anglia

Ross Divers was hoping to travel on the bridge for the first time today, but was unable to following the closure.

He said: "My friend has been using the bridge quite a lot and it helps take the pressure off the roundabout.

"Now its closed, the roundabout is busy again and you get stuck in traffic."

Ross Divers says traffic builds up at a nearby roundabout when the bridge is shut Credit: ITV News Anglia

The Herring Bridge was meant to open in the summer of 2023. However, delays prevented the bridge from opening until February 2024.

In February 2023, construction was halted when an unexploded Second World War bomb was discovered.

It forced 350 homes to be evacuated before an 'unplanned' detonation three days later.

  • Watch the moment when an undetonated Second World War bomb exploded in Great Yarmouth

More disruption ensued in July when river voles were thought to have been discovered, forcing construction to be halted for a second time.

While a “potential burrow” was identified, no voles were found, Norfolk County Council said.

Voles are protected in law, under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, and it is an offence to kill, injure or take them.

Local MP Sir Brandon Lewis, who announced he will be standing down at the next election on 14 March, highlighted the bridge's opening in his resignation letter.

Sir Brandon described the river crossing as a "culmination of an outstanding team effort."

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