New footbridge on A577 gets final approval

A bridge that was hit by a lorry more than two years ago in Orrell near Wigan is set to be soon replaced.

The footbridge, on the A577, was over a busy slip road and residents have been keen for it to be replaced.

Highways England has now confirmed that despite the Coronavirus, work on the bridge will continue as planned.

Vegetation clearance work has already been done on the site and Highways England continue to work towards mid-May for the new bridge.

Confirmation that the work will go ahead has been welcomed by Orrell councillor Michael Winstanley, who has long called for the footbridge to be replaced.

He said: “This is great news that the Highways England are putting the legal steps in place to enable the installation of the footbridge. I am sure that this announcement will be very much welcomed by local residents. I have been contacted by many residents over the last few years since the bridge was demolished asking if it was going to be replaced. I am extremely pleased Highways England have been true to their word and we can start to look to the next few months when work will commence to erect the footbridge. I particularly welcome this as it is something I have been campaigning for since the bridge was demolished.

“This is a rare piece of good news in challenging times. I hope that no last minute glitches get in the way,” he added. 

The footbridge, which goes over the A577 where the slip road joins the main interchange for the M6 and M58, was destroyed on November 9, 2017. It was hit by a heavy goods vehicle, which overturned and blocked the road. The driver was trapped inside and had to be rescued by the emergency services.

The bridge was knocked down and it was several months before the debris was removed, with Highways England saying they were seeing what could be salvaged to make a replacement bridge.

Efforts have been made to ensure the new bridge meets current standards, including providing a ramp offering disability access.

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