URGENT repairs to Northwich’s historic Winnington Swing Bridge will come to an end in mid-December, the council has confirmed.

An overnight road closure is needed to safely remove the equipment used for the project and allow for repairs to the parts under the bridge that cannot be reached when it is open to traffic.

This will take place from 10pm on Friday, December 11, until 5am on Saturday, December 12.

Repairs to the mechanical parts of the bridge underneath have been brought forward to take advantage of the road closure.

Cllr Karen Shore, deputy leader at Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: “Work so far has not been visible to the public as it has been carried out underneath the bridge. A final road closure is needed for the next phase to complete the project.

"I’d like to thank residents for their patience and support while these are vital works are completed. Pedestrians will be able to cross the bridge at all times and will be safely directed away from the works.”

The bridge carries the A533 road between Northwich and Barnton over the River Weaver Navigation.

CWAC says the repairs are urgently needed to avoid a longer more disruptive closure in the future if the Grade II-listed, 110-year-old bridge’s condition deteriorated further.

Without the repairs a 7.5-tonne weight restriction would be needed on the bridge, the council insists.

CWAC is working closely with the Canal and River Trust on the project to minimise disruption.

Richard Spencer, project team leader for the Canal and River Trust, added: “This has been a significant project to secure the bridge structurally and co-ordinating the mechanical repairs to coincide with removing the work equipment means that further closures can be minimised.”

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Meanwhile, the council has been exploring a business case for future multi-modal improvements to the A533 Winnington corridor, including the viability of an additional river crossing.

The Guardian revealed in August that options being considered included a second single lane bridge, or an entirely new roadway to take vehicles off the historic structure completely.

An update is expected in the new year.