Links reopen as flood-damaged bridge replaced

A BRIDGE which was destroyed during the 2007 floods has finally been rebuilt, providing an important link for those who live, work and study in the Hillsborough area of Sheffield.

Livesey Bridge was destroyed in July 2007 as South Yorkshire was ravaged by flood water.

The original dated from the mid 18th century and was built to serve Wardsend Cemetery, but in the modern era had become important for access between Livesey Street and Club Mill Road, spanning the River Don.

Its replacement has been constructed in steel and stone. Coun Colin Ross, Sheffield Council's spokesman for enterprise and development, said: "Livesey Bridge has always provided an important link for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians in the area.

"The people of Hillsborough will now regain access to the riverside walk along Club Mill Road and to Parkwood Springs. This bridge will make a real difference to connecting people in the area, especially students at the nearby college."

The new bridge connects Hillsborough, and Hillsborough College, to a new walkway alongside the river being constructed on the former Whites landfill site.

That will form part of the Upper Don Walk, which is designed to offer an alternative route avoiding traffic on Penistone Road.

It will also benefit cyclists travelling between Neepsend, the city centre and Hillsborough, the college and other communities in north Sheffield.

Nick Waterfield from Hillsborough Forum said: "Hillsborough and its area is a great place to explore with its parks and rivers. The re-opening of the bridge will open riverside routes damaged by the floods of 2007 to people again."

Heather Smith, executive director of Hillsborough College, said: "We welcome the revival of this local landmark."

The bridge is an important link for the plans to develop the wider Upper Don Valley riverside walk network, which has long been promoted by the Upper Don Walk Trust.

Another project to repair damage from the 2007 floods is also in progress, meaning the cracked A629 near Wortley is expected to be closed until next year.

Diversions have been put in place to guide traffic away from the road, the most obvious route between Sheffield and Huddersfield, while contractors work to rebuild the carriageway.

The scheme will cost around 270,000 in total, with the Department of Transport paying for the work as part of a flood damage claim.