Work is set to begin on a key bridge in York in a bid to prevent it being cut off by flooding.

City of York Council has announced that it is going to start work on improving access to Millennium Bridge, which is often cut off when the River Ouse rises.

As The Press reported in December, deputy leader of the council, Cllr Pete Kilbane, said that the council was going to "get on with fixing" the issue of access to the bridge during floods.

It came after former transport boss, Andy D'Agorne, said: "It's not exactly a complicated project, but it urgently needs completing."

Cllr Kilbane also said that plans to improve accessibility had "been talked about for around seven years".

Millennium Bridge connects Fulford to South Bank and Bishopthorpe Road. When it can't be accessed, the nearest access point becomes Skeldergate Bridge - which is just over a kilometre to the north.

Access to Millennium Bridge is often cut off by flooding (Image: Newsquest)

Funding was allocated to carry out the improvements to the section of the National Cycle Network Route 65, which runs through York. The improvements included work to raise the level of the existing paths by Millennium Bridge.

After funding was obtained, it was left to the Environment Agency to approve work to begin.

The council has since confirmed that work is set to begin between the bridge and Butcher Terrace to improve accessibility.

They said the work would also allow the bridge to stay open for longer when the river levels rise.

Beginning on Monday, June 17, the project is set to last for five weeks.


To improve accessibility, the council will:

  • Raise part of the path by 60cm to level it out
  • Install pipes that will run under the path to allow flood water to drain under the route  
  • Improve the bollards and tactile paving arrangement to increase accessibility
  • Widen the path and remove the speed humps

The council added: "These works are making this key walking, wheeling and cycling route more resilient to flooding, allowing it to remain passable for longer when river levels rise.

"Diversions will be in place around the works which will allow people to continue to use the route and get across the bridge, with signage in place to help people."