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Local authority emergency closure of Hammersmith Bridge

Hammersmith Bridge remains closed to all traffic, including vessels on the river.

There are safety concerns linked to the recent hot weather, which pose a significant risk to vessels and persons passing underneath the structure.

Following expert technical advice, Hammersmith & Fulham Council closed the bridge on 13 August 2020.

In the light of the council’s decision, the PLA has established a 15-metre exclusion zone either side of the bridge.

We regret that passage under the bridge is not permitted until further notice.

Q: When will the bridge re-open?

That will be a decision for the council, who are legally responsible for maintaining the bridge. We are working with them closely to try and ensure it re-opens as soon as is safely possible.

Q: Who is responsible for maintaining the bridge? Does the PLA have any role in keeping it safe?

This responsibility lies with the local authority, who own the bridge.

Q: Will commercial boat operators be entitled to compensation for loss of business linked to the bridge’s closure?

That is a matter for Hammersmith and Fulham Council, who have made the decision to close the bridge to navigation, not the PLA.

Q: If a boatowner has a vessel stranded either side of the bridge following the closure, what should they do? What options are available for owners who are currently unable to moor their boats, as a result of the closure?

River users will need to seek alternative, safe and legal moorings, until the bridge re-opens

Small vessels may be able to use the canal system to circumnavigate the closure but, this is subject to being locked in and out by the Canal and River Trust and has size limitations. This would be achieved using the Paddington arm of the Grand Union Canal, via Brentford and Limehouse Locks which has beam, draft and air draft restrictions, so will be unsuitable for most vessels.

A full list of local visitor moorings on our Boating on the Thames website.

Q: If I have further questions, who should I contact?

Anvar Alizadeh, Highway Structures Manager, Hammersmith & Fulham Council: Tel. 020 87533303

Email: anvar.alizadeh@lbhf.gov.uk

Q: Where can I find more information about the bridge?