Motion in Parliament as MSP demands action on bridges

The lift bridge over the canal at Twechar has been shut since February
The lift bridge over the canal at Twechar has been shut since February

Central Scotland lost MSP Mark Griffin has lodged a motion in the Scottish Parliament calling on the Scottish Government and Scottish Canals to make urgent repairs to the lift bridges at Bonnybridge and Twechar.

The two bridges have been closed since February due to public safety fears leaving the Kelvin Valley stretch of the canal, including Auchinstarry Marina, isolated from the rest of the network.

Mr Griffin said: “Urgent steps are required from Scottish Canals and Scottish Government ministers to get these bridges operational.

“The £78 million Millennium Link project delivered on its aim of opening the canal to through navigation and has regenerated local communities.

“The indefinite closure of these bridges has not only threatened the great advances made, but has isolated those who reside on the Kelvin Valley stretch of the canal and threatened local jobs in the catering, tourism and leisure industries.

“Scottish Canals, which is answerable to Scottish Ministers, has a statutory duty to keep the Forth & Clyde Canal open to through navigation, and a responsibility for ensuring the canals and bridges are properly maintained.

“The impact of the closure is being felt across the Kelvin Valley and it is imperative that Ministers step up to the mark and get the bridges functioning again.”