New Bridlington bridge should have a ramp

Margaret and Bob Chorley face being stuck on one side of the bridge....
Margaret and Bob Chorley face being stuck on one side of the bridge....

A new footbridge over the railway line  in Bridlington is unlikely to be any help for people with pushchairs and wheelchairs.

A planning application has been submitted for the replacement bridge, which links Georgian Way with Bessingby Industrial Estate.

....with Shirlie Dunnachie on the other side of the bridge.

....with Shirlie Dunnachie on the other side of the bridge.

But residents quickly spotted from the artist’s impressions that it will not be accessible to everybody.

Two friends who live at opposite sides of the bridge have said the new design is a missed opportunity.

READ MORE: 'We want our bus back' say isolated Bridlington residents

Margaret Chorley lives with her husband Bob in Avocet Way. She said: “The old bridge was built in the 1960s. The estate where I live wasn’t even built then.

“The volume of traffic was much less and they didn’t have disability access requirements like we do now.

“Thirty per cent of the population are over 65 and I don’t know how many others have got disabilities or use pushchairs.

“A ramped bridge would definitely be well used. I have got a mobility scooter but at the moment I have to go to Morrison’s in my husband’s car.

“I feel totally isolated. I have only lived here two years and I would love to go to West Hill to some of the community groups that my friend Shirlie goes to.”

On the other side of the bridge, Shirlie Dunnachie is involved with the West Hill neighbourhood watch group and has seen disappointment from mums who take their children to school, but have to take a longer route because they have pushchairs.

“Going over the bridge is probably a 10 or 15 minute walk. But the long way round doubles the time,” she said.

“We have been without a bridge for more than a year but surely with the technology available they could have come up with something.”

Civil engineers from East Riding of Yorkshire Council found significant signs of wear and tear with the structure of the bridge during an inspection in December 2017 and it was closed in January 2018.

A shortage of money meant delays to getting a replacement bridge but the planning application has now been submitted. A council spokesman said: “Because the council’s plan for the footbridge is now a live planning application we are unable to comment, but the proposal will be considered in line with the normal planning process.”