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By Michael Brown

Senior Staff Writer

22 June 2021

| | 3 min read


Tyne Bridge restoration bid submitted

A funding bid to restore the city’s iconic Tyne Bridge to its former glory has been announced by City Council leader Cllr Nick Forbes. 

The Tyne Bridge silhouetted against the sun

Newcastle City Council has submitted a bid to government for £18.45 million, as part of the Levelling Up Fund to completely refurbish the grade II* listed structure, with the council providing just under £2 million in match funding.  

With the bridge approaching its centenary in 2028, the council is keen to source funding as the bridge needs a long overdue major maintenance programme, which includes the sizeable task of painting it, as well as upgrading many parts of this ageing structure 

'We are committed to preserving the bridge'

Cllr Nick Forbes said: “The Tyne Bridge is recognised the world over and is not only an iconic landmark, it is also a key part of the city’s infrastructure and a gateway to our city and the wider region. 

“It is 20 years since the historic crossing was refurbished and it is badly in need of restoration to return to its former glory. We know there is strong public support across the region for refurbishing our much-loved bridge and our bid is fully backed by Newcastle’s MPs, as well as other political leaders and MPs across the region.  

“We are committed to preserving the bridge for future generations and continue to work to secure the funding we badly require. This is a fantastic opportunity for government to truly level up and ensure that the people of the North East have a vital transport link maintained, as well as seeing this iconic landmark shining proudly again against the city’s skyline.” 

Widespread support

The bid has been backed by political leaders and MPs from across the region and all three Newcastle MPs. 

In a letter of support, Chi Onwurah MP said: ”The Tyne Bridge bid has widespread support from city stakeholders and I wish to make clear my full support for this application and the opportunity it represents to level up Newcastle upon Tyne. I am confident that the measures will make a real difference to people and places in the city and across the whole of the North East.” 

Restoring the Tyne Bridge

The Tyne Bridge was last fully painted in 2000, with minor painting works carried out in 2010/11. The paint system is designed to last approximately 18-20 years between major maintenance and this work is urgently required. 

The restoration programme includes steelwork repairs, extensive painting, concrete repairs, drainage improvements, stonework and masonry repairs, bridge deck waterproofing, parapet protection and bridge joint replacement. These works will maintain the load capacity of the structures and future proof the route by alleviating the need for continual adhoc maintenance works. 

If successful with the bid, work could start on site from late summer 2022 with the whole programme expected to take up to two years, specialist contractors will be required due to the grade II* listed status.