RARELY can a structure be the cause of so much celebration.

But there were cheers from residents as a ribbon was cut to officially open a new steel bridge at Newtons Cove, Weymouth.

Earlier this year people living in the area didn’t think they were going to get a new bridge at all.

Dorset County Council had planned to put in ramps on the banks either side of Newtons Road when the 73-year-old concrete bridge came to the end of its life and had to be demolished.

But after a campaign by residents, supported by community groups and former county councillor Clare Sutton, the council was able to find money in the budget to fund a new structure.

The bridge was designed by artist Chris Tipping, who collaborated with the council’s engineering and construction teams.

Support came from local authority arts officers, members of the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership and Dorset Countryside’s Coastal Ranger Team.

The bridge, which carries the South West Coast Path and links the Nothe with Bincleaves, has the stamp of approval from London 2012 organisers because it has been awarded the Inspire mark, which recognises community projects associated with the Games.

Dorset County Council principal engineer for bridge management, John Burr-idge, said: “By using steel we have been able to make the structure much lighter and more open.”

Funding worth £280,000 was found from the Local Transport Plan improvement budget.