Road closure in the Barfords after bridge inspection reveals faults

Motorists are being urged to avoid the north Oxfordshire villages of Barford St Michael and Barford St John due to a road closure after faults were found on Barford Bridge.

Oxfordshire County Council took the decision to close a section of Bloxham Road after recently observing deterioration of the bridge. Action was needed due to the large number of HGVs using the route and the risk of significant further damage before suitable measures could be put in place to stop heavy vehicles from using the bridge, such as a physical width restriction with appropriate advance signage.

Given the severity of the deterioration, weight restriction signage alone which is often ignored was not considered appropriate.

The bridge will need to be partially reconstructed to bring it up to full load carrying capacity. This is likely to take more than a year to arrange.

Oxfordshire County Council is now planning to install a physical width restriction of two metres (6ft 6in) to prevent vehicles of over three tonnes using the bridge but enabling the road to be reopened to the majority of cars. This may take a few months to arrange.

The bridge will remain open to pedestrians, equestrians and cyclists.