Drivers warned as major UK bridge set to close for repairs after Britons hit with £365,000 in fines

Drivers warned as major UK bridge set to close for repairs after Britons hit with £365,000 in fines

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Hemma Visavadia

By Hemma Visavadia

Published: 24/05/2024

- 09:16

The Bridge is set to be closed for four days next week

Drivers have been warned to expect traffic disruptions on a major London bridge which closes for four days to strengthen the structure after drivers ignored the weight restrictions.

In total, drivers were fined over £365,000 for ignoring the three-tonne weight limit on the Albert Bridge in April alone.

The bridge will be closed from 7am on Tuesday, May 28, and reopen at 7am on Saturday, June 1, as it undergoes a series of repairs.

To help combat traffic delays, a diversion will be in place for drivers via Chelsea Bridge or Battersea Bridge.

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Albert Bridge

Drivers can be fined £130 for breaching weight restrictions on the bridge


Improvements will also take place on the pavements with pedestrians able to access at least one footway at a time.

Cyclists, however, can cross the bridge throughout the period but are encouraged to dismount.

Engineers will be carrying out “essential maintenance” work to replace some of the carriageway deck panels.

Due to the panels in the bridge being Grade II listed, constant care is required to ensure it remains in good and stable condition.

Councillor Cem Kemahli, lead member for planning and public realm for the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, explained that the bridge is an “icon” of the London skyline but it's also an important river crossing.

He said: “As a responsible guardian of the bridge, it’s crucial that we undertake essential maintenance so we can keep the bridge in good health and keep it operational now and in the future.

“We’re sorry for the short-term inconvenience this will cause to some drivers and their journeys.

“We hope we can limit some of this by doing the work during the half term holidays,” he told the BBC.

In January, Kensington and Chelsea Council enforced a weight limit on the bridge to help keep the structure and panels intact.

However, drivers ignored the restrictions with subsequent fines being issued as a result.

In April, there were 2,811 breaches of the weight restriction, which the council claimed put “unnecessary” strain on the bridge with drivers fined on average £130.

The average weight of a UK car is roughly 1.7tonneswith lorries and vans can weigh between three and seven tonnes.


Albert Bridge

Kensington and Chelsea Council issued a three-tonne weight limit to preserve the Grade II listed bridge


To find out the weight of a vehicle, the council is encouraging motorists to use the DVLA website before they travel.

“This is the most accurate way to check as some vehicle log books provide a different measure of weight,” the council added.

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