M20 closure to remove collapsed bridge ends 'ahead of schedule'

Work on the M20 Image copyright PA
Image caption The M20 was closed in both directions to allow Highways England to carry out the work

The M20 has fully reopened earlier than expected after demolition work to remove the remains of a collapsed bridge.

The footbridge came down near Maidstone in Kent after it was hit by a lorry carrying a digger last weekend.

A large part of the motorway was due to be shut in both directions until Monday morning for the removal to take place.

But Highways England had reopened both north and southbound carriageways by 16:30 BST on Sunday.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Highways England said it needed to remove the remains of the bridge "under safe conditions"

About 100 people were working "around the clock" to remove the remaining section of the bridge, Highways England said on Saturday.

Drivers had been warned the road would be closed between junctions 1 and 4 coast-bound and junctions 4 and 2 London-bound from Friday evening until 06:00 BST on Monday.

Image copyright PA
Image caption A motorcyclist was hurt and a lorry driver was treated for shock after the collapse

The collapsed section of the pedestrian bridge, near the village of Addington, was removed from the scene last weekend, and the road was reopened a day later.

The M20 is the main route to the Channel Tunnel and Port of Dover.

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