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Rochester Bridge Refurbishment Project wins international award

A major bridge refurbishment scheme by a medieval charity has won an award at an international conference.

The Rochester Bridge Refurbishment Project was crowned the winner in the refurbishment category at the inaugural Bridges Awards, which took place during the 29th annual Bridges Conference, this year known as eBridges21.

Rochester Old Bridge, Rochester, after the restoration work. Picture: Rochester Bridge Trust
Rochester Old Bridge, Rochester, after the restoration work. Picture: Rochester Bridge Trust

The refurbishment was a £12 million, 18-month scheme involving three crossings over the River Medway at Rochester – the Grade II-listed Old Bridge, the New Bridge and the Service Bridge running between them. Paid for by the owners the Rochester Bridge Trust, it was delivered by infrastructure services provider FM Conway.

Sue Threader, bridge clerk (chief executive) of the trust, said: “This project was a major scheme to put our three bridges at Rochester into the best possible condition for the future.

"To win this award – which is judged by some of the best bridge engineers in the country – is to receive recognition that our achievements are as good as we believe them to be. We are absolutely thrilled.”

The project won the Bridges Award for New Life – projects above £5 million category, with the judges stating that this was “a clear winner”.

Feedback included recognition of the “good community engagement and commitment to reducing carbon”, and this was a “very impressive refurbishment… emphasising the historic details of the Grade II-listed structure”.

The judges added that the community benefits were very well evidenced and they were impressed by related efforts to promote engineering education.

The awards were organised by Bridge Design & Engineering magazine in partnership with the Bridge Owners Forum. The winners were announced at the eBridges2021 conference, which included speakers from all around the world.

To find out more visit www.bridgesawards.co.uk or see www.rbt.org.uk/refurbishment for information about the Rochester Bridge Refurbishment Project.

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