Concern for historic bridge as weight limit unenforced

Councillor Steve Good at Newbridge

Councillor Steve Good at Newbridge

First published in News
Last updated
Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Blackbird Leys and Greater Leys. Call me on 01865 425403

TRAFFIC cameras to catch lorries flouting weight restrictions on a 14th century bridge have been broken for months.

The loss of the cameras has sparked fears that Grade II-listed Newbridge between Witney and Kingston Bagpuize could be damaged by heavy trucks going over it.

The bridge, which carries the A415 between Witney and Abingdon, has an 18-tonne gross vehicle weight limit, so any vehicle capable of carrying more than 18 tonnes is not allowed to cross.

The cameras record vehicles’ licence plates and then, if that truck is registered as over 18 tonnes, Oxfordshire County Council sends the owner a penalty ticket.

Eynsham Oxfordshire county councillor Charles Mathew said: “It’s true that the cameras are not working at the moment and there have been problems for some time with the operator and the surveying of that camera.

“There is heavy traffic still going across and there are probably 10 or 12 lorries a day over the weight limit.

“This is not a satisfactory situation, and Oxfordshire County Council would be the first to admit that.

“We are, with some urgency now, having been prodded quite strongly, looking for other solutions to the problem.

Related links

“In the meantime, Trading Standards – who have the authority to enforce it – have been visiting very frequently and making representation to the guilty parties.”

Steve Good, a Standlake, Aston and Stanton Harcourt councillor on West Oxfordshire District, has raised concerns.

Speaking at the Aston Parish Council meeting last month, he said there was a “real risk” that the bridge could be lost as a river crossing.

Others bridges are Tadpole Bridge on the Buckland to Bampton Road, and the toll bridge at Eynsham, creating a “significant increase” in Aston traffic, he said.

He told the Oxford Mail: “We are looking at the matter again to protect this very important monument.

“What we want to happen is for Oxfordshire County Council to enforce the existing weight limit.

“The cameras have been out of action since last November.

“It can’t be doing the structure any good.

“If you ask anybody they’ll agree something needs to be done.

“I’m working with colleagues at Oxfordshire County Council to find the best way forward.”

County council spokesman Owen Morton said: “The council has experienced problems with the camera system and is investigating alternative solutions.

“In the meantime, Trading Standards officers are proactively monitoring the bridge and enforcing the weight limit, as well as continuing to act on information provided by members of the public.”

Work to strengthen the bridge is limited because it is a scheduled ancient monument and Grade II listed building.

  • Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone's contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.

Send your Letter to the Editor

11:20am Monday 28th July 2014

What do you think? We welcome letters from our readers on a wide variety of subjects and you can send us a letter through the blue headline above.

Our top stories

UPDATE: Car fire and oil spillage closes A40 near Ducklington and A34 car fire cause delays

Oxford Mail: A40 alert

4:03pm Friday 19th December 2014

A CAR fire and oil spillage closed the A40 westbound causing severe delays.

Motorcyclist 'punches pensioner and hits his car windscreen with helmet' after Cutteslowe crash

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

12:00pm Friday 19th December 2014

A PENSIONER was “severely” injured when he was attacked in his car by a motorcyclist in Cutteslowe, police said.

UPDATE: Body found after motorhome fire at caravan site near Chipping Norton

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

11:30am Friday 19th December 2014

A BODY was found after a fire at a caravan site motorhome.

What brilliant picture is in our Oxford Mail Advent Calendar today?

Oxford Mail:

6:00am Tuesday 9th December 2014

December is Advent Calendar time and we have a special new interactive graphic for you each and every day until Christmas Eve. I've chosen the best 24 pictures of 2014 and I'll be unveiling one a day - so what is behind's today's door?

Oxford United striker John Campbell is keen to make his mark at Hartlepool

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Friday 19th December 2014

John Campbell admits it would be difficult to keep his kit on if he was able to make an impact on debut for Oxford United tomorrow.

‘New £9.2m Leys pool’s too small for contests’

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Friday 19th December 2014

SWIMMING competitions planned for the new £9.2m pool in Blackbird Leys could be at risk due to lack of space, it has been warned.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree