Funders withdraw cash for Strabane footbridge

Funders have withdrawn more than half a million pounds for a new footbridge in Strabane.

The charity, Sustrans, said it was because Strabane District Council could not spend the money in time.

Last year, the council failed to find a contractor to complete the £3 million project within budget.

The Council's acting chief executive Danny McSorley said the project was not "dead in the water."

"We are disappointed that we were not able to deliver the project within the time set out by Sustrans," he said.

"But I think we have had a very positive response from Sustrans who are saying they are committed to working with the council to move the project forward.

"They are also happy to work with the council to identify other possible projects which could spend that money before 2013."

Rick Cook, the manager of the Sustrans national cycle network, Northern Ireland, said the money for the project "was gone."

"We are very keen to work with the council to find some other pot of money to replace that £600,000 that was there for the bridge," he said.

"That money has gone, but are willing to help find other money that may be there to help achieve the realisation of this very important bridge."