Deerness Bridge replacement
A £1.5m project to replace Deerness Bridge, between Ushaw Moor and New Brancepeth, was completed in August 2018.
Bridge re-opened to traffic
Deerness Bridge reopened to traffic and pedestrians on 7 August 2018.
Engineers will remain on site to complete landscaping works and to clear the compound areas, however this should not impact on traffic in the area.
Thank you to local residents for their patience and support while we carried out repairs to the bridge.
The regular bus services have now been able to resume to normal service.
Why was the work needed?
Deerness Bridge is a pre-First World War crossing of the River Deerness, a tributary of the River Browney and ultimately the River Wear, between the villages of New Brancepeth and Ushaw Moor, to the west of Durham City.
In early 2016 a scheduled inspection identified concerns about the condition of Deerness bridge.
A detailed structural review of the bridge found a significant weakness that could no longer withstand the weight of regular traffic and on 13 April 2016 a decision was made to close the bridge to all traffic and pedestrians in the interest of public safety.
Following a review of whether the bridge could be re-opened to limited traffic, a temporary bailey bridge was put in place in May 2016 to allow the crossing to re-open.
Initially sitting above the historic structure this temporary bridge was moved to sit alongside it in July 2017 so that engineers could begin the process of repairs.
What have the repairs involved
Work to replace the bridge has been a complex process, and we have worked very closely with the Environment Agency and other interested parties, including utilities companies.
The bridge has been replaced "like for like", with a new bridge deck built but the original abutments retained.
A number of public utilities also crossed the river at Deerness Bridge and these have had to be diverted.
Our work was hampered by severe weather, with rain, heavy snow and flooding in early 2018 causing some delays.