When was the Tyne Bridge last painted and when will it be repainted?
The sight of thousands crossing the Tyne Bridge from Newcastle to Gateshead is one of the highlights of the Great North Run.
The bridge has become a symbol of Newcastle and Gateshead since it opened in 1928 and is one of seven spanning the River Tyne in the urban area. But the once-proud crossing is a sight to behold right now, as its green-painted coat is peeling off to expose the rust beneath.
It’s become a source of embarrassment that one of the North East’s most iconic landmarks hasn’t had a fresh coat of paint in over 20 years. This feeling is compounded when the deplorable condition of the bridge is visible to the whole country during coverage of the Great North Run.
Read more:The Great North Run shines a light on Tyne Bridge neglect
“Can someone run next year for the ‘Repaint the Tyne Bridge’ charity, it’s starting to get really spooky,” tweeted Newcastle’s Lee Robson.
“Went over the Tyne Bridge the other day, looked like absolute horror. Not good for the Great North Run this weekend,” wrote Simon Wilson of Sunderand.
The good news is that plans have been approved to give Tyne Bridge a much-needed makeover, which is due to start later this year, according to advice from Newcastle and Gateshead.
When was the Tyne Bridge last painted?
There will be people taking part in the Great North Run who weren’t even alive the last time the Tyne Bridge was painted.
Newcastle City Council says: “The Grade 2 listed structure was last refurbished and painted in 2001 and is well overdue for a refurbishment programme. The paint system has been designed to last approximately 18-20 years between major maintenance work, and renovation works are urgently needed.”
When will the Tyne Bridge be repainted and who will pay?
Engineers closed the bridge earlier this year to carry out an assessment and funding has been secured for a maintenance project.
Newcastle City Council says: “The Tyne Bridge, together with the Central Motorway, was part of a £41.4 million bid that Newcastle City Council submitted to the Department for Transport in 2019 as part of its Major Roads Fund and council has been in ongoing discussions with the government since to secure this much needed funding.As part of the bid, the government will provide £35.3m, with the remaining funds coming from the Newcastle and Gateshead councils.
Work is expected to begin later in 2022 and will last approximately two years. The bridge will be 100 years old in October 2028.
Councilor Martin Gannon, leader of Gateshead Council and chairman of the North East Joint Transport Committee, said: “We are very pleased to have finally secured this funding. Newcastle and Gateshead have worked closely together to campaign for national funding, to recognize the enormous importance of the Tyne Bridge as a symbol of our whole region.
“This is a vital axis for cross-river traffic, at the heart of our network, and it is fantastic that it is back to its best in time for the centenary.”