Leeds & West Yorkshire

Flood-damaged West Yorkshire bridge dismantled

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Media captionWork has started on the dismantling and rebuilding of a 19th Century bridge that was damaged by flooding

Work has started on the dismantling and rebuilding of a 19th Century West Yorkshire bridge damaged by flooding.

Part of the 200-year-old, Grade II listed structure in Elland collapsed after flooding hit the town in December.

Its stones will be incorporated in a new £5m crossing expected to be open by the end of the year.

A temporary footbridge is in place over the Calder and Hebble Navigation.

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The Canal and River Trust (CRT), which owns the bridge, said the force of the floodwaters washed out its foundations and undermined the road above.

Work on a replacement was delayed until utility companies diverted electricity cables, gas pipes and telecoms wires, which crossed the bridge, into a new structure below it.

'Historical interest'

Judy Jones, heritage advisor for the CRT, said; "It's sad to see the bridge being taken down but this is an important step in reinstating the link across the canal for local people.

"Research has shown that the bridge was built just over 200 years ago as an extension to the river bridge and so has great historical interest.

"With this in mind it's not just a case of going in with a wrecking ball, we're taking a careful approach to preserve as many of the important features as possible so that they can be put in place on the new bridge."

The new crossing is being funded by a £5m grant from central government.

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