Mill Road bridge will be closed to motor traffic for eight weeks from Monday 1 July and the local community is determined to ensure the street remains open over the summer months. Residents, traders and local councillors are working together on a programme of events and community activities under the name ‘Mill Road Summer’ to make the most of the quieter streets and celebrate the area’s unique culture.
Mill Road Summer is being coordinated by local organisations Over Mill Road Bridge and Camcycle, the local cycling charity, with help from dozens of local volunteers. The two organisations, together with other groups such as the Mill Road Traders Association, had successfully campaigned for a temporary footbridge to be installed during the bridge closure, but this week Govia ThamesLink revealed it would not be feasible to install. Instead, contractors will knock down the section of bridge one half at a time, maintaining access along the existing pavements on each side. There will be no access for pedestrians, wheeled bicycles and wheelchairs at all on fourteen days over the eight weeks.
The bridge will be fully closed from 8.45am until 8.45pm on Friday 5 July to Monday 8 July; Thursday 11 July to Saturday 13 July; Sunday 28 July to Wednesday 31 July and Saturday 3 August to Monday 5 August.
Camcycle Executive Director Roxanne De Beaux said, “We are extremely disappointed that the proposed footbridge will not be installed and that communication with the community about this has come so close to the date of the bridge closure. Having to take a lengthy diversion for so many days during the closure will considerably inconvenience those who walk, cycle or use mobility aids. However, Camcycle is delighted to be supporting the Mill Road Summer initiative and will continue to work hard to communicate the latest news from the community to our members and supporters. We believe that reducing through-traffic is a key element to creating liveable communities and safer streets, and look forward to helping Mill Road thrive during this period with less motor traffic.”
Romsey Councillor Dave Baigent said, “Mill Road Summer was established to improve community relations, improve the use of shops and to keep the flow of pedestrians and bicycles over the bridge. We negotiated in good faith with Govia to achieve this aim.”
Mill Road Summer is keen to promote all events and activities happening in the Mill Road area during July and August and welcomes all volunteers who would like to help with community activities. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit millroadsummer.org to find out more. Mill Road Summer events are community-led and part-financed by Govia ThamesLink Railway as part of the bridge closure project.