THE council leader has confirmed he will 'support the efforts' of the committee battling to secure funding to save Warrington Transporter Bridge.

Cllr Terry O'Neill (LAB – Burtonwood and Winwick) met with with Friends of Warrington Transporter Bridge (FoWTB), along with other council chiefs, to discuss what can be done to preserve the historic grade II site.

All agreed the bridge, situated across the River Mersey spanning 200ft and 76ft in height, deserves to be preserved, without draining funds for essential services to residents.

External funding will be considered by FoWTB, including heritage grants and money from global body UNESCO.

Cllr O'Neill said: "For many people the Warrington Transporter Bridge is an important part of the town's industrial history.

"I am happy to support the group in its efforts to secure Heritage Lottery Funding to safeguard this structure."

Appleton resident Margaret Ingham, who set up Facebook page Save Warrington Transporter Bridge in 2013 to save the site, confirmed she was very pleased with the latest development.

The page has accumulated 830 'likes' so far.

"It was agreed that the bridge would benefit from signs directing people to it and highlighting its unique position as the only rail transporter bridge in the world," she said.

"The council is currently assessing immediate maintenance issues and how these may be funded.

"There is an excellent sign to this effect at the sister transporter bridge in Osten, in Germany.

"FOWTB will provide volunteers to promote the bridge at heritage open days in September."

Messages of encouragement from across the globe continue to be sent to FoWTB and Mrs Ingham has confirmed the meeting 'is only the first in a series' to ensure the bridge is not forgotten.

The bridge's lease expires in 2027 and it is believed the council will assist with FoWTB in documenting the condition of the bridge, while sharing its engineer's report.

Anybody hoping to join FoWTB will be able to sign up at the committee's store at Lymm Historic Transport Day on Sunday.

A model of the bridge, constructed of more than £4,000 worth of Meccano by Woolston resident Norman Williams, will also be in Lymm for visitors to see.

It stands at 27 inches high, 74 inches in length and 18.5 inches wide.

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