MAINTENANCE work will partially close Weymouth Town Bridge for more than a month following an inspection.

News of the new repair job follows on from work carried out last year when welds on the bridge were repaired, forcing the bridge to close for long periods last year.

The council says that it plans to undertake this latest work after the busy summer holiday period to minimise disruption.

It will be done in two stages and one lane of the bridge will be closed to vehicles at a time.

Dorset Echo: Engineer inspecting Weymouth Town Bridge's parapetsEngineer inspecting Weymouth Town Bridge's parapets (Image: Dorset Council)

The bridge, which is more than 90 years old, is an important route in and out of the town centre and its closure last year caused disruption for local businesses.

READ MORE: Weymouth Town Bridge to close for ten weeks of repairs

Dorset Council said it sent engineers to look at the bridge last week to check the parapets, which it says are now showing signs of 'localised corrosion'.

Parapets are safety barriers that are installed on the edge of a bridge, retaining wall or similar structure with a vertical drop, providing protection for vehicles and pedestrians.

Dorset Echo: Weymouth Town Bridge Weymouth Town Bridge (Image: Dorset Council)

A spokesperson for Dorset Council said: "Our engineers visited Weymouth Town Bridge (last week). They were checking the bridge's parapets, with a specialist weld and painting inspector.

"The parapets date back to when the bridge was built in the 1930s. They were last painted in 2012 and are showing signs of localised corrosion.

"We intend to carry out the work after the summer holidays. We will keep disruption to a minimum but may need to close a lane of the bridge to vehicles while the work takes place.

"We will consult with our conservation team whilst planning and undertaking our maintenance work.

The council added: "We are currently working on the basis of mid-September to end of November 2024, for the first side.

"However, this is subject to change. To enable the bridge to remain open to vehicles and pedestrians, we will be working on one side at a time and will return in 2025 to complete the other side."

It is not yet known how much the maintenance will cost as the council is undertaking a procurement exercise in order to get quotes from specialist contractors.

When asked by the Echo why the work was not done when the bridge was closed last year, the council added: “When doing the previous deck repair work, a footway remained open so pedestrians could still get across the bridge.

"If both sets of work took place at the same time, we would have needed to close the footway, meaning no pedestrian access.

"By working on one side of the bridge parapets at a time, we will be able to keep a single lane open for vehicles and a footway for pedestrians.”