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Drypool Bridge


A fully encapsulated innovative scaffolding solution was used in order to undertake refurbishment of the Drypool steel rolling lift bridge.

Key services provided

  • Removal and replacement of footways
  • Steelwork repair
  • Painting of steelwork on cantilevers
  • Temporary works
  • Grit blasting

Originally opened for public use in 1961, Drypool Bridge is an electrically operated Scherzer rolling lift bridge. During an inspection, it was noted the timber footpaths on each side of the bridge had become rotten, as well as identifying a number of extensive steelwork defects, which would affect the long term safety of the structure.

Situated across the River Hull, Drypool Bridge is critical to the transport network in Hull, allowing vehicles to pass from the east to the west side of the city. The bridge’s lifting function also allows freight ships to transport cargo through the river network. The team was required to ensure the bridge remained operational throughout the works, which posed a significant challenge for VolkerLaser to overcome.

Working collaboratively with the client, the harbour masters and a specialist scaffolding contractor, VolkerLaser devised an innovative, fully encapsulated scaffolding solution, designed to lift with the bridge as it rose.

Appointed as principal contractor, VolkerLaser were required to remove footways and paintwork, in order to expose the cantilever steelwork along both sides of the bridge. The paint removal process required special environmental awareness by the team, due to the paint being lead-based. Once the paint had been safely removed, the team grit blasted all steelwork before re-painting, prior to the installation of new footways and parapets.

Throughout the project, constant communication between VolkerLaser and the harbour masters in Hull was a necessity. With the bridge lifting twice a day during high tides, the team were required to clear the work area each time, with only a 45 minute window to do so. Collaborative project meetings were held regularly with Hull City Council to ensure the contract ran smoothly.

Delivered concurrently with the refurbishment works at the nearby King George Docks, VolkerLaser has ensured the city of Hull continues to be a hub of shipping trade for generations to come.

Facts and figures

  • Client
    Hull City Council
  • Value
  • Duration
    64 weeks
  • Project categories

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