The repair work to four of Bourton Park’s footbridges is now complete, the 18-month long project included repairs to steel and structural timbers, replacement handrails, balustrade, spindles, and decking. Additional repair work has been identified as more decay was revealed within bridge no. 2 leading from the Bourton Road (kissing gate entrance). At Environment Committee on the 19th December 2022, Members agreed with a Structural Engineer’s recommendation that bridge no. 2 be removed and not replaced due to the proximity of bridge no. 1, that already crosses the River Great Ouse.
A conditions report from a Structural Engineer concluded that integral elements of bridge no. 2 had reached the end of their service life. The other bridges in Bourton Park are constructed in a different way to bridge 2, using solid hardwood timber elements which can be repaired and replaced with relative ease whereas bridge 2 is of structural glulam components.
The Town Council’s Greenspaces Team inspect the park’s footbridges on a weekly basis and any safety hazards are dealt with immediately, or the relevant bridge is closed until the necessary repairs are made. The Town Council aims to keep bridge no. 2 open and operational until a new section of footpath can be created linking the footpath from the Bourton Road (kissing gate entrance) to bridge no. 1.
Cllr Fran Davies, Chair of the Environment Committee said, “We are hoping that the new section of footpath will very soon be in place. Every effort is made to ensure both safety and accessibility in our parks and green spaces and I thank everyone for their commitment to these aims.”