Clifton Suspension Bridge to close during Bristol International Balloon Fiesta Night Glows

It will be closed to prevent damage to the bridge due to the volume of people using it during the popular weekend

The Clifton Suspension Bridge will be closed during the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta Night Glows, it has been announced.

The 2022 Fiesta will take place from 11 to 13 of August in Ashton Court Estate.

The Bridge Master of Bristol’s Clifton Suspension Bridge, Trish Johnson has confirmed that during the evenings, the bridge will be closed to all pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles.

“The bridge will be closed at 6pm on both these evenings and will remain completely shut until midnight. There will be no access for any pedestrians, cyclists or traffic", she said.

Evening closures during the fiesta were first implemented eighteen years ago following concerns that the 150-year-old landmark could suffer potentially unacceptable structural stresses due to the volume of pedestrian traffic.

“A crowd of pedestrians on the roadway of the bridge creates a far greater loading than normal car traffic and this could cause damage to the bridge and injury to its users,” she added.

Bristol Balloon Festival 2020. Credit: PA images

“We have agreed with the event organisers that to ensure the safety of the public and the bridge, the bridge should be closed for the Thursday and Saturday evenings.

“While it is safe for its normal use and volume of traffic – both vehicular and pedestrian – the Victorian bridge is old and must be treated with respect.

"The structure is checked and maintained constantly and we take advice from leading engineering consultants.

“They have advised us that, if certain loading conditions on the bridge might be exceeded, it could be at risk.

“The Clifton Suspension Bridge Trust would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused by these bridge closures.”

Bridge closure times during this year’s International Balloon Fiesta will be:

· Thursday 11 August from 6pm until midnight

· Saturday 13 August from 6pm until midnight