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Fears raised that ‘well used’ Moray bridge could be closed unless essential work is carried out

Tim Eagle has raised concerns over the condition of the Cloddach Bridge.
Tim Eagle has raised concerns over the condition of the Cloddach Bridge.

Rural Moray communities are calling on the council to carry out essential work on a “well used” bridge to avoid closure.

A large volume of water has been passing through the central channel of the Cloddach Bridge on the B9010 Elgin to Dallas Road and undercutting the structure.

Over the years, the bridge has been an important connection between rural communities and towns such as Elgin.

Now concerns have been raised that a deep channel is being cut out which may effect the structure and safety of the bridge.

Moray Council has said it is in the process of reducing the weight restriction on the bridge from 7.5 tonnes to three tonnes to avoid having to close the bridge to all traffic.

A council spokesman added: “The process for reducing this weight limit will take approximately six months and will include a public consultation.

“A temporary restriction will be used to control traffic over the bridge during this process.

“The longest diversion required for vehicles over three tonnes would be six miles.

“The reduction in weight limit is required in the interest of safety; if we didn’t it would be necessary to close the bridge to all traffic.”

A large volume of water has been passing through the central channel of Cloddach Bridge undercutting the structure.

Last night, Moray‘s Tory MSP candidate Tim Eagle, said he is engaging with the council on its plans for bridges.

He added: “I was contacted by residents near Cloddach Bridge who were concerned that a vital linkway risked been closed if works were not carried out due to the volume of water passing through the central channel of the bridge undercutting the structure.

“I took the opportunity to visit the bridge and was amazed at just how significant the channel been cut by the volume of water was.

“Whilst I am no expert on bridges it was hard not to notice a significant and deep trench eating into the surrounding concrete.

“We have a very large road network in Moray which is vital to keep our strong rural economy going, it is very important that bridges are kept safe and operational.

“I hope residents ensure they voice their concerns on if this reduction is likely to impact local people of businesses as I know this is a well used bridge.

“Just one bridge being closed can cause significant disruption to communities.”

Fochabers Lhanbryde councillor Marc Macrae added: “Rural Moray contains much of our road network away from the main trunk routes and many of them are lifeline routes with no other easy access in or out.

“It is essential that both residential and commercial traffic can flow as freely as possible making essential maintenance even more important to ensure our rural routes remain open.”

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