When the temporary bridge over the River Medina at Newport Quay was installed for the Isle of Wight Festival at the beginning of June, there had been some suggestions on social media that the bridge had been weakened in previous years by the heavy Festival traffic.
The bridge had been closed to traffic in June 2017 after it was discovered to be unstable.
OnTheWight has been on the case pursuing this for just over six weeks, after initially asking the council to ask if they had investigated whether the stability of the bridge had been affected by the Festival traffic. They have today provided a response.
IWC: “Deterioration is due to corrosion”
A council spokesperson told OnTheWight,
“We estimate the bridge was constructed in the early 1960s and from photographic evidence, was certainly in place in the 1970s.
“The bridge spans a tidal river and on each high tide, the lower part of the supporting steelwork becomes immersed in salty (brackish) water.
“Consequently, the deterioration is due to corrosion over time as a result of regular exposure to this brackish water.”
IWC: “No evidence festival traffic contributed to condition”
The council spokesperson finished by confirming,
“There is no evidence that overloading or use by festival traffic has contributed to its current condition.”
However, they did say last month,
“The bridge will be closed to vehicles until the new bridge is installed, which is likely to be July/August.”
We’ve asked for an updated on when that might by and will add here once we hear back.