TfL bail-out fund means work on repairing Hammersmith Bridge can restart

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It has been announced that works to improve the safety of Hammersmith Bridge will restart after Transport for London (TfL) received a huge financial bailout from the Government.

The news was shared at the seventh meeting of the Hammersmith Bridge Taskforce which was held on 13 November.

It was chaired by Transport Minister, Baroness Vere. Attendees included the Project Director Dana Skelley plus representatives from the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, the Greater London Authority, Transport for London (TfL), and the Port of London Authority.

Dana Skelley, speaking on behalf of the Hammersmith Bridge Taskforce, said: “The  taskforce held another productive meeting. Further to the extraordinary funding and financing package agreed between government and TfL, we’re pleased to report that TfL will shortly be instructing contractors to carry out immediate mitigations work on the two western pedestals. This is being delivered as part of the overall bridge stabilisation work package.

“The taskforce also held constructive discussions around the draft business case recently submitted by TfL following close working with the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. The business case remains a work in progress. When finalised, it will set out not only the strategic case for repair, but also all the elements needed for successful project delivery, including procurement approach, governance arrangements, affordability, funding profile and contributions, and individuals’ responsibilities.

“The taskforce further noted the progress made by TfL in taking forward the temporary ferry service, following publication of the Prior Information Notice (PIN) to interested parties on 5 November. We remain confident that the ferry will be operational by spring 2021.

“Finally, the taskforce discussed the potential for further controlled river passages to enable the planned movement of vessels at pre-designated times, based on detailed risk assessments.  Planned dates are in discussion for later in November and early December and details on these will be publicised as soon as possible. 

“Public safety remains the highest priority so further changes will only be made when the bridge owners determine it safe to do so in line with the advice of expert engineers – it remains unlikely that more regular river use will resume until stabilisation works on the bridge have taken place. We’ll provide further updates on this as soon as we can.”

The Hammersmith Bridge Taskforce was set up by the Department for Transport in September 2020 to work towards safely reopening the Hammersmith Bridge. The taskforce is chaired by Baroness Vere and includes representatives from TfL, London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, Network Rail, the Greater London Authority and the Port of London Authority.

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