A new footbridge to a primary school is finally being built — nine years after it was promised.
The bridge across a stream in Radstock links Nelson Ward Drive to St Nicholas’s CofE primary school, letting children from the new Heritage Park development and the Writhlington part of town walk to school more easily.
It is hoped that this will mean parents will stop blocking up the Meadow View cul-de-sac by the school while picking up children from school.
Eleanor Jackson, who represents Westfield on Bath and North East Somerset Council as well as sitting on the parish council, said: “At present parents jam Meadow View, obstructing driveways, parking on double yellow lines and polluting the atmosphere by letting their car engines run, often for as much as 45 minutes before the children leave school.”
The bridge across Kilmersdon stream has been nicknamed “the bridge over troubled waters” after the nine years of delays which have held up construction.
Radstock town councillor Gary Dando said: “We didn’t think it would ever get done.”
Developer Linden Homes agreed to pay the council £174,000 to build the bridge as a section 106 agreement — a condition of planning permission where a developer agrees to pay for some public infrastructure — when Bath and North Somerset Council granted permission for the building of the new homes in 2014.
But issues around the footbridge’s impact on ecology and construction issues contributed to delays which threatened to lead to the money being handed back to the developer. But now the bridge is finally going ahead — nine years after it was initially agreed.
Ms Jackson said: “Is this a record?”
Work is now being carried out on the foundations, with the bridge expected to be craned into place.
But Mr Dando questioned whether it would lead to more issues with cars if lots of people drop their children off on Nelson Ward Drive. He said: “My concern is the turning area.”