Government plans to fund the restoration of 18th Century Tadcaster Bridge to the tune of £3.3m are being blocked by Samuel Smiths Brewery, who described the plans as “a waste of public money”. Samuel Smiths owns the land that is needed to build a tempory bridge across the river whilst the restoration of the permanent bridge takes place. In a letter to North Yorkshire County Council, the brewery argued that any plans should take into account that the bridge’s collapse was due to poor maintenance and that if repaired it should be widened to improve access for pedestrian traffic.
Floods Minister and Conservative MP Robert Goodwill said that he was very irritated by the Brewery’s stance on the issue and stated “I do hope that they will think again and let us get on with putting this tempory bridge in place. The floods in Yorkshire have been devastating for residents and businesses across the county and we have seen the patial collapse of the Tadcaster bridge split the community in two. We want to get life in Tadcaster back to normal as quickly as possible”.
Councillor Carl Les at the local authority said that they would persue “every legal avenue” to go ahead, despite the landowner’s objections, and offered a further £300,000 to pay towards the temporary footbridge.
Structural assessments are already underway.