Sturmer Bridge – Progress update

Latest News

Following a review of our proposed building solution for Sturmer Bridge we are now planning for this project to be on site during the 2024/25 financial year due to the level of funding required to support the scheme, and time taken to programme the works.

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Sturmer Station Bridge, B1061 Water Lane, Sturmer

Works location and photos

Sturmer Station Bridge and B1061, Water Lane
Sturmer Station Bridge and Stour Brook

About the scheme

Sturmer Station Bridge is a two-span brick arch structure which carries the single carriageway B1061 Water Lane over Stour Brook. Footways are not provided over the structure.

No restrictions are currently in place on the bridge however the road carries a speed limit of 30mph.

The Environment Agency classify the brook as a Main River, which has been subject to flooding at various locations in the past.

In 2018 a study was commissioned to carry out a bridge option study, this was supported by a flood investigation study which was completed in November 2021.  These two studies determined that the bridge should be replaced with a new single span larger structure, the benefits of which will be a reduction in flood risk in the area.

Current status – 2023

We have recently reviewed our proposed building solution for Sturmer Bridge in light of our proposed design likely requiring a construction period of around 12 months. This timeframe would include a substantial amount of time dedicated to the diversion of utility services, required as part of the project.

We are now taking additional time to explore opportunities that may exist to reduce the construction period, such as using precast concrete elements, before submitting the Approved in Principle document to gain technical approval for the design.

Despite efforts being made in our re-designs to reduce the construction period, the village should still be prepared for a lengthy construction programme involving a road closure. The current ground conditions mean that deep pile foundations are required, which will necessitate careful planning and river management. This is a lengthy operation in its own right.

We anticipate our Approval in Principle document to be ready for publication and sharing with the Parish Council/Sturmer Flood Action Group during March 2023. Our proposed changes will offer little outward difference in appearance of the new bridge. The geometry of the bridge will be the same and parapets will have a brick appearance.

We have obtained the costs for diverting all service connections that are presently carried by the bridge, which are substantial given the work that will be involved, and likely to increase. These will all require re-routing prior to the work commencing and returning back to the bridge once the work is substantially complete.

We are now planning for this project to be on site during the 2024/25 financial year due to the level of funding required to support the scheme, and time taken to programme the works.

We will work closely with the Environment Agency and other stakeholders throughout this process to progress this work, and provide updates on this webpage.

In the meantime, please be assured that we consider the bridge safe for its current use and have no plans to impose restrictions at this time. We will continue to monitor the bridge as part of our routine inspection programme.

Forward Programme

  1. Spring 2023

    Technical Approval Submission

  2. Winter 2023

    Tender for Scheme

  3. Financial year 2024/25

    Construction (subject to budget)

Further information

Our intention is to keep you informed of progress, with the latest information being available on this webpage and shared with the local Parish Council.