UNION CHAIN BRIDGE: Exciting new stages of work on restoration of famous bridge
Image: Northumberland County Council
It follows an ambitious funding bid put together by Northumberland County Council, Scottish Borders Council, Museums Northumberland and community group Friends of the Union Chain Bridge, after serious concerns about the condition of the world-famous structure.
Both councils committed match funding totalling £5.7m towards the £10.5m scheme, with other fundraising activities continuing to be progressed by the Friends of Union Chain Bridge in support of the project.
As well as conserving the historic structure, the project team has also developed a comprehensive programme of community engagement and education activities.
David Renwick, Director, England, North, The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “We are delighted to be able to support this project, which thanks to money raised by National Lottery Players, means that the Union Chain Link Bridge will continue to serve its shared communities, demonstrate the power of cutting edge engineering and to enrich the surrounding landscape for years to come.
Northumberland County Council Leader Glen Sanderson said: “This is the start of a crucial year for the project – one which will see the whole bridge be taken down and slowly be put back together again.
Scottish Borders Council’s Executive Member for Infrastructure, Travel and Transport, Councillor Gordon Edgar, said: “Work on this major project is progressing well and some very significant milestones are coming in the next few months as we start to truly move into the restoration phase.
Built in 1820 by Captain Samuel Brown, the Union Chain Bridge is the oldest operational chain suspension bridge in the world still carrying vehicles - when it’s not closed to traffic for restoration!
The project team are currently recruiting archival research volunteers to help uncover the untold stories of the bridge.
For more information about the volunteering roles available or for general updates as the project progresses please visit www.unionchainbridge.org
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