Good progress continues on Putney Bridge repairs

Published: Wednesday 30th July 14

A fortnight in and the £1.5m programme of essential repairs to Putney Bridge continues to see steady progress with the project remaining on schedule.

Following the old road surface’s removal last week, the focus over the past seven days has been removing the old waterproof membrane, which needs replacing, and preparing the bridge’s underlying concrete deck in advance of the new waterproofing being laid.

The bridge being "sand blasted" right up to the edge of the eastern walkway

Preparing the bridge deck for the new membrane has involved “sand blasting” away any remnants of the old one and also any solvent residues that were used to fix it in place. Repairs have also begun to fix defects in the deck’s concrete structure.

Kerb stones on both sides of the bridge have also been removed so that the new membrane can be laid across the entire width of the bridge, apart from the eastern footpath. The waterproofing of this section will commence in around three to four weeks time when a wider, western walkway will be opened up for use by pedestrians and cyclists.

The use of sand blasters up to the very eastern edge of the road surface and underneath the kerb stones, and the need to ensure the safety of passers-by, is why large hoardings have had to be erected around the work site and why the footpath is slightly narrower than normal. This will improve considerably when the walkway switches to the wider western side next month.

Work has also continued to refurbish the subway at the northern end of the bridge. The existing wall covering is being removed so that the underlying brickwork can be repaired.

Additional lighting has also been installed on the wooden hoarding to improve visibility and pedestrian safety at night.

And work continues off-site to refurbish the bridge‘s ornate Victorian lamp columns which are being restored by specialist craftsmen.

Transport spokesman Cllr Jonathan Cook said: “The works remain on schedule for October’s reopening. Our focus remains on getting this important repair job completed in the shortest possible time so that things can get back to normal as quickly as possible for the travelling public.”

The bridge is currently closed to all vehicle traffic, including buses so that the £1.5m worth of repairs can be completed during the summer months when traffic is at its quietest.

Removal of the kerbstones ahead of waterproofing

The works also now include a separate project to fix the damage caused earlier this month when a single decker bus crashed into the bridge’s parapet wall. This will involve retrieving six large granite blocks from the riverbed after they were sent plummeting into the Thames as a result of the collision.

Pedestrians can still walk across the bridge as can cyclists as long as they dismount and wheel their bikes across. As an alternative, people can also cross the river by using the rail bridge linking Deodar Road with Putney Bridge tube station.

Cyclists can also use this bridge and to make life easier for them the council has just obtained permission from its owners London Underground Ltd to install cycle rails on the steps. This means cyclists will be able to wheel their bikes up onto the rail bridge instead of having to carry them up the steps. The rails are likely to be installed shortly.

Buses are currently operating a shuttle service from both ends of Putney Bridge. This means that passengers must cross the bridge on foot and catch another bus to continue their journey. Transport for London has confirmed that people only need to pay one fare.

Motorists can access up-to-the-minute travel alerts through the @tfltrafficnews twitter feed and at

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Recent comments

Great you are sorting Putney Bridge. Thank you. Cars used to get stuck behind stationary buses on the rise of the bridge as you leave Putney going towards Fulham because of the traffic light placed in the middle of the bridge at the same point. Either the bus stop or the traffic light needs to be moved in future so that traffic can flow . . . is this going to happen?
josephine acland

4 September 2014

Thanks for getting this work underway. The road surface has always been a challenge and I do hope that this work will be sufficiently robust enough to withstand the weight of the busses. I am sure that all cyclists like myself will be very pleased with the end result.

14 August 2014

Whilst I note your comments about lighting on the hoarding on at least 2 occasions when I crossed the bridge at night in the last week the hoarding lights have at best intermittent if on at all. I feel this is something which needs addressing in terms of safety and also making pedestrians feel safe.

1 August 2014

Thanks for the update and good luck with the repairs - the road surface was always a bit dodgy, but I guess the real problems are under the surface. I'm a keen cyclist and this is my favourite route out of London, so I'll be pleased when the repairs are finished.
Rod Cooper

1 August 2014