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New Compasses Bridge opens to traffic on schedule

Volunteers and contractors met a tight deadline to get the new Compasses Bridge at Alfold opened to traffic on Thursday, March 31st.

They successfully realigned the entrance road to the Dunsfold Park airport and business complex across the bridge over the Easter weekend, completing phase one of the project.

Project engineer Tony Ford commented: “Our volunteers and visiting groups have worked tirelessly to achieve the critical date for the road changeover. It needed to happen on time to mesh with the aerodrome’s busy events schedule.”

Volunteers worked with contractors CJ Thorne on the realignment and surfacing, moving the road off the 1930s concrete causeway which blocks the canal.

Work on the project to replace the causeway and open nearly a mile of the canal’s Summit Level to navigation began 15 months ago. Phase two – demolition of the causeway, re-creation of the canal cut and landscaping – is scheduled to start in mid-April.

The Trust plans to officially open the new bridge and restored canal section on Sunday, October 2nd, when it will be one of the locations for celebrations to mark the 200th anniversary of the opening of the Wey & Arun Canal from Pallingham in West Sussex to Shalford in Surrey.