A bridge too far

Work to replace a Sudbury footbridge, costing £190,000, has forced parents to walk their children to school along busy roads.

The footbridge between Essex Avenue and Raleigh Road, which passes over Springlands Way, was removed by Suffolk County Council on December 23 so it can be replaced to reduce maintenance.

People living nearby have complained about the lack of advertising for the work and the problems caused by closing footpaths around both ends of the bridge, which was built around 40 years ago.

Caron Stocker said she had to walk her five-year-old daughter along the roads to Woodhall Primary School instead of using the footpath.

“It’s not ideal and we had no idea it would be closed,” she said.

“It is not as safe as walking on the footpath. There are an awful lot of people living on this estate who go to the school.

“I saw the road signs go up to say the road was closing but we didn’t have any other notification.”

Emma Stalker, whose four-year-old daughter Lois also goes to Woodhall Primary School, said: “I’m not too happy about having to walk all the way round from Drake Road.

“I now have to walk her on a route where the diverted traffic is going and there are no cones where the work vehicles are.”

Jason Bain, who lives next door to the work in Essex Avenue, said while the work needed doing, homeowners should have been notified.

“The council should have put a note up saying the path would be closed, but that is life, the work is going on,” he said.

Mr Bain, who works as a builder, added that the earth that had been dug up by workers had been dumped next to his fence.

“As long as they clean the mess up when they are gone, it doesn’t matter,” he said. “It is the county council, so if they make a hash of this it won’t look good on them.”

A Suffolk County Council spokesman said the replacement bridge would be installed on Wednesday night, with all work set to be completed by March 3.