Darley Abbey toll bridge sees roadwork rush

Darley Abbey toll bridge
Image caption Owner Patterns Properties said the toll money was spent on maintaining Darley Abbey bridge

Traffic going over a privately owned Derby toll bridge has doubled since roadworks began at a nearby busy junction, the owners have said.

Darley Abbey Bridge, owned by Patterns Properties, normally sees about 300 vehicles a day but this has jumped to about 600.

Resurfacing work started at Five Lamps Junction on Monday, closing roads and putting diversions in place.

The company said the £1 tolls would go towards maintaining the bridge.

Patterns Properties reintroduced the charge on the bridge, which crosses the River Derwent via Haslam's Lane, in September 2010 when it took ownership of part of the Darley Abbey Mills site.

'Total reconstruction'

Company director Anthony Attwood said: "The takings have gone up at the moment because people are using the bridge as a diversion while the roadworks are being undertaken in the city centre.

He added: "It isn't really a profit making venture, it's just to pay for the maintenance of the road which we recently had repaired.

"We spent several thousands of pounds in re-tarmacing the road approaching the bridge."

A previous toll on the road was dropped in the 1980s but reinstated in an attempt to cut traffic.

The work on Five Lamps has closed Kedleston Road and Garden Street and caused disruption for thousands of drivers.

The city council said work would stop between 25 and 27 August to minimise disruption during the bank holiday.

Nigel Brian, network manager for the city council, said a "total reconstruction" was being carried out "to put some strength back into the roads".

The work is due to be completed by 29 August.

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