Futuristic Princes Quay A63 footbridge in Hull overlooks city's marina

Picture: Bruce Rollinson. Words: John Blow

Picture by Bruce Rollinson. Technical details: Nikon D6 with a 17-35mm lens, exposure of 6 seconds at f8, ISO 100.

It may resemble something from a science fiction future, but the new Princes Quay footbridge over the A63 in Hull is a real life addition to Yorkshire’s coastal landscape.

Illuminated in parts with neon pink and green, the modern structure overlooks one of the city’s oldest maritime heritage assets - the marina.

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The bridge was finally unveiled this month after more than 200,000 working hours and more than £22m spent, according to Highways England. Named Murdoch’s Connection, it immortalises Hull’s first female GP, Dr Mary Murdoch.

The name was picked by students from Newland School for Girls in an essay competition to decide which of the area’s many figures should be honoured.

It is hoped the bridge will help to bring more footfall to areas such as Humber Street and the Fruit Market, which were severed from the rest of the Old Town when the A63 was built some 40 years ago, as well as ease congestion on the dual carriageway.

From its lowest point it stands at 47 metres tall – two metres higher than Hull Minster.

It is 60 metres long and weighs around 150 tonnes.

The project started in autumn 2018, when the site was cleared in preparation for the start of piling, which means the installation of large posts to support the foundations.

By spring 2019 the piles had been installed by drilling them into the water in the marina and in the ground in the surrounding area.

Each of the 13 piles which were put into the water at the marina could support a Boeing 747 jet, says Highways England, and “if you were to lay out the concrete piles they would span the length of six football pitches”.

In November 2019, efforts to move the bridge into place were completed after all the foundations in the marina had been installed.

Workers then started on the concrete jetty and the ramps, completing the structure in position by spring 2020.

The public can now use the bridge, on which 1,700m cubic metres of concrete was used.

Technical details: Nikon D6 with a 17-35mm lens, exposure of 6 seconds at f8, ISO 100.