Spencer Group project on historic suspension bridge wins industry award

Engineers work on Menai Suspension Bridge

A high-profile project delivered by bridges maintenance and refurbishment specialist Spencer Group on one of the world’s most historic crossings has claimed a prestigious award.

The Hull-based engineering business has received industry recognition for a project it is delivering to replace footpath panels on the iconic Menai Suspension Bridge.

The project claimed the Bridges Management Award in the inaugural Bridges Awards, which celebrate the ingenuity and expertise behind the design, construction and maintenance of pedestrian, highway and rail bridges around the UK.

The coveted awards are run by Bridge Design & Engineering magazine and were held as a virtual ceremony during eBridges 2021, the 29th annual Bridges conference, exhibition, workshop and networking event.

The awards judges commended several aspects of the challenging project, saying it “demonstrated good inspection and maintenance processes and innovative use of installation equipment”, showcased “impressive quality control” and delivered “good solutions for maintenance issues on an iconic bridge”.

Linking the island of Anglesey and the Welsh mainland, Menai is the world’s second oldest operational vehicular suspension bridge.

Spencer Group is carrying out the major works to remove, replace and then resurface almost all of the footway panels on the approach spans on both sides of the Grade I listed bridge.

Spencer Group is delivering the project for UK Highways A55 Ltd and is using complex rope access methods, often operating over the side and under the bridge deck, 30m above the Menai Strait.

Kerry Evans, Operations Manager of UK Highways A55 Ltd, accepted the award for the project, which involved a collaborative partnership between UK Highways A55; WSP, the Principal Designers for the scheme; and Spencer Group.

Luke Fisher, Sector Lead for Bridges and Structures at Spencer Group, said: “We’re delighted and very proud that this project has been recognised in the Oscars of the bridges sector.

“The judges clearly recognised the ingenuity, innovation and quality that are the hallmarks of this scheme. Above all the award is a testament to the exceptional collaboration and team working between the project partners.”

The Menai Suspension Bridge award reinforces Spencer Group’s outstanding reputation for excellence in the delivery of bridges maintenance and renovation projects.

Spencer Group is especially respected and trusted for its capability in the sensitive refurbishment of historic crossings and currently has teams working simultaneously on the world’s two oldest operational suspension bridges – Menai and Union Chain Bridge, which crosses the River Tweed and links England and Scotland.

Union Chain Bridge pre-dates Menai by six years and the Spencer Group project there involves dismantling, rebuilding and refurbishing the crossing to mark its bicentenary.

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