A MAIN road through Frampton Cotterell will be closed for six weeks later this month, resulting in more lengthy diversions for motorists.

Church Road is to be shut to all traffic from Sunday, July 20 to allow for a dilapidated old bridge to be replaced.

The closure is the second time the road will be shut this year after a four-week closure in April when preparatory work was undertaken and a temporary footbridge was constructed.

A spokesman for South Gloucestershire Council, which is carrying out the works, said: “During this time traffic will be diverted to allow contractors to complete demolition of the old bridge and make the site ready for the new ‘advanced composite’ structure that will replace it.

“Pedestrians will still be able to cross the river during the closure by using a temporary footbridge, and temporary arrangements for local bus services will be put in place before the closure begins.”

He added: “The six-week road closure has been scheduled for the school holidays to minimise disruption and no other roadworks are scheduled for the diversion route during the closure period.

2Some weekend and night-time working will be carried out during the closure, and large dynamic message boards will be used to keep residents and drivers up-to-date on progress.”

The new bridge will be one of the first in the UK to be made from layers of glass and carbon fibres bound together with a tough resin in a process more commonly seen in advanced passenger aircraft manufacturing.

The materials used are resistant to frost, extreme temperatures and de-icing salts that can cause problems in steel and concrete bridges, and require no painting or waterproofing. It is estimated that this could reduce the bridge’s maintenance costs by up to 35 per cent over its 120-year lifetime.

Also being used are much lighter than conventional materials, meaning that the bridge can be installed in roughly half the time of a conventional structure, reducing disruption for local residents and businesses.

The bridge deck will be transported to Frampton Cotterell for installation in late August, with the road reopened to traffic from early September. A three-way traffic light system will continue for a limited period after this date, to allow the bridge’s stone parapets to be completed, utilities reinstalled and final road surfacing to be carried out The work is due to be completely finished by the end of November.

Cllr Dave Hockey (Lib Dem, Frampton Cotterell) said lessons had been learned from the closure at Easter and as a consequence, no other roadworks were being scheduled to take place nearby.

He said, following calls to the council, large interactive display boards will keep residents and drivers updated, improved signage of the diversion will be put in place, arrangements for bus service changes will be put in place in good time and the council’s website www.southglos.gov.uk will be kept up to date.