Sir Bobby bridge delay continues

IT'S still the bridge to nowhere!

IT'S still the bridge to nowhere!

More than six months after building work on Ipswich's newest bridge finished not a single resident has been able to cross it.

It's been given a name and has become a local landmark . . . but isn't likely to carry a single pedestrian or cyclist until August!

It is supposed to make life easier for residents of the new Voyage estate on the former Compair Reavell site to reach the town centre.

But although the large white bridge across the River Orwell, named Sir Bobby Robson Bridge by The Evening Star readers, was completed at the start of the year and was due to officially open in March, it amazingly remains shut off to pedestrians because of red tape and wire fences!

A safety audit is still being carried out and although this is meant to be the final stage, residents have been told it could be another eight weeks before they can use it.

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Rory Vaughan, 22, who moved into one of the properties on the Fairview development last month and is currently decorating his new home, is frustrated that he cannot use the bridge as a short cut into town where he works.

He said: “It would be a lot easier if the bridge was open. I moved here about four weeks ago and work in Axa so it would be a lot quicker for me if I could just walk across the bridge.

“It takes about ten minutes at the moment to get into town but I think it would be half that if we could go across the bridge.

“When I first moved in they said it would be open by May 28 but now apparently it might be another six to eight weeks.”

Residents can only helplessly look at the impressive landmark, constructed at the end of last year, and wait for the fences that are blocking the footpath to be removed.

Victoria Tomlin, 22, added: “It is a bit of a pain. It would be a shorter journey getting into town than it is now.”

Ipswich Borough Council said a safety audit must be completed before the bridge can open.

An Ipswich Borough Council spokesman said: “We are in the final stages of the bridge's completion and a safety audit is currently being carried out.”

The bridge links the estate to West End Road, and is designed to give residents easy access to the Russell Road area of the town. It also links the development with an important office area, which incorporates the borough's Grafton House offices, the county's Endeavour House headquarters, the Crown Court building and �- in the future �- the new magistrates' court.

The bridge was a condition of the planning permission when Fairview was given the go-ahead for the project.

Fairview was unavailable for comment.

Are you a resident on that development with a view on this? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail

Problem Bridges:

The Millenium Bridge over the Thames between St Pauls and the Tate Modern became known as the “wibbly wobbly bridge” when it opened in 2000 because it swayed in the wind and made walkers feel seasick! It was closed for several months while a solution to the problem was found.

The original Tay Bridge near Dundee collapsed in 1879 as a train crossed it. An estimated 75 people died - there were no accurate records of how many tickets had been sold.

A total of 79 people died in Great Yarmouth in 1845 when a suspension bridge collapsed because it was overcrowded by residents trying to watch a circus performer going down the River Yare in a barrel pulled by geese!