§ Mr. Higgins
asked the Secretary of State for Transport whether he has received the final consultants report on the Severn bridge; and if he will make a statment.
§ Mr. David Howell
My hon. Friend told the House last November that we had received the interim report from the consulting engineers, the Flint and Neill Partnership, who had been appointed to consider strategies for strengthening the Severn bridge and the other parts of the Severn 439W crossing. We have now received the final report from Flint and Neill and I am placing copies in the House of Commons Library.
I am glad to be able to inform the House that the report confirms that it will be technically feasible to strengthen the crossing so that it can carry, without restrictions on the flow of traffic, considerably higher loads than at present.
The report puts forward alternative engineering options for achieving a higher loading standard. They will have to be evaluated and examined in detail. That work will proceed at once.