Fratton footbridge used by scores of Portsmouth fans is set to close for three months

A FOOTBRIDGE frequented by scores of Portsmouth FC fans will be closed to the public for three months – but football fans will still be able to use it.

Thursday, 9th January 2020, 7:00 pm

The bridge, which runs between Clarkes Road and Fratton Way, north of Fratton Railway Station, will shut on Monday, January 13 until Monday, March 2.

It comes as Network Rail gears up to carry out strengthening and refurbishing works on the bridge, to ensure it can continue to take high levels of footfall.

Without intervention, the organisation said, it will become ‘too weak’.

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Clarkes Bridge, in Fratton, which links with Fratton Way. Picture: Google Street View

Preparations to get the site ready for work began on Monday, with cleaning, painting and repairs due to start in the early hours of January 12.

While the bridge will officially be closed until works have been completed, it will reopen for four days to accommodate football fans walking to Pompey’s home games at Fratton Park.

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These include the Blues' FA Cup clash with Barnsley, on January 25 and their league games against Sunderland, on February 1, Shrewsbury on February 15 and Rochdale, on February 29.

Temporary fencing will be put up next to the footbridge, with a temporary footpath closure put in place.

Network Rail said: ‘The equipment we use may cause some disturbance, but we will make every effort to minimise unnecessary noise.

‘We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience. Our staff are briefed on working responsibly in the local community.’

The works are also expected to cause at least 108 hours of rail closures, with some periods of work set to take place during hours trains normally run through the city.

Network Rail said 27 hours of rail closures will respectively occur from 1.25am on January 12 and 1.25am on January 19.

A further 28 hours of closures will come into play at 11am on January 25, before a final closure of 26h35m begins at 1.25am on March 1.

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