Quadring businesses counting cost of 6 week Bedford Bridge closure
Businesses and residents are calling for action to be taken to repair a bridge which has been closed for almost two months and creating a large detour.
Quadring residents have been warned that Bedford Bridge, which has been out of action since it collapsed on December 21, may not be fully repaired by Lincolnshire County Council's Highways until next year.
Currently, lorry drivers and farmers are having to go an lengthy detour to Gosberton due to the bridge being out of action.
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Bratley Farms, in Quadring Eaudyke has been affected by the closure
Tractors would normally be able to drive over the bridge to access fields close to their site but are having to detour around Gosberton and Quadring.
Managing Director John Bratley said: "Nothing has been done for six weeks or more and to my knowledge nothing has been done for the last 50 to 60 years.
"Whoever is responsible for bridges in this county need to be accountable and having a road closed for six or more weeks makes one wonder how efficient the council is running. The impact on businesses is unacceptable."
Greenacre Plant Nursery says the detour is causing havoc for customers and suppliers who need to access their nursery in Watergate.
Office Manager Skye Inkley said: "This is having a big impact on us and we don't need this when we are coming up to our busy season.
"Our phone line is currently dangling in a hole across the bridge as BT can't do anything to it until Highways have repaired the bridge. The phone line is vital to our business.
"This needs to be fixed sooner rather than later because it is having a big impact."
The nursery, which has been based in Watergate for 12 years, supplies plants to wholesalers and market traders.
The business requires three to four lorry loads of plants which are delivered from Holland each week.
Skye added: "The closure has not been updated on sat navs so lorries are having to turn around.
"The Dutch lorry drivers struggle and they are ringing for us to direct them. I am also having to send out weekly reminders about the bridge to our customers."
South Holland district councillor Henry Bingham said: "I am very disappointed in the turn around time as it is inconveniencing residents and also costing businesses in the area money.
"It took far too long for them to put a diversion in place and is it adding more congestion onto the main A152."
Cllr Richard Davies, executive member for highways at Lincolnshire County Council, said: "I'd like to thank residents for bearing with us after the partial collapse of the bridge late last year. It's taken time to assess the damage and plan works to repair it before we could reopen the road safely.
"We will be on site in early March to start working on the bridge. What is left of the bridge is still in sound condition, and we will be inserting supports to help stabilise the exposed end. This will be a temporary repair that will allow us to reopen the road safely, hopefully in mid-March.
"In the long term, we will need to replace the bridge completely at a later date. We expect to be able to do this at some point next year."