A key travel route has now closed to motorists, who will next be able to cross between Cookham and Bourne End in March.

"Essential" maintenance works are grinding traffic flow through Cookham to a halt this winter as Cookham Bridge is closed from today (October 16).

Signs directing motorists around the closure via a diversion can be found around Maidenhead, Cookham and Bourne End - with Road Closed signs on the approach to the bridge on either end.

A sign on the road reads: "Cookham Bridge closed October 16, 2023 until March 22, 2024."

Staged works will be taking place on the Grade II listed structure, while pedestrians and dismounted cyclists can pass over the bridge on foot.

The first phase of the maintenance will see the re-waterproofing of the bridge and once completed future phases will include bearing replacement, parapet repair and resurfacing.

It is hoped that the work will help extend the life of the structure, ensuring the bridge continues to serve the community for many years to come and will avoid more disruptive work in future years.

The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead have stated: "Access to any properties or business within the closure area will be maintained at all times."

Motorists will be directed along the diversion route.

The route will follow the A4094 south from Cookham, west along the A4 Bath Road, north on the A404, and then along the A4155 Marlow Road, with this route in reverse for traffic on the northern side of the bridge.

Councillor Geoff Hill, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “Routine inspections have identified the need for essential maintenance to this historic bridge.

"If left unattended, extensive and longer-term strengthening works would be required in future.

"By making this investment now, we can ensure the bridge is fit for purpose for everyone to use for decades to come and avoid more disruptive work in future years.

"While I understand that a project of this scale will bring some temporary disruption for road users, residents and businesses in the area, we will be striving to keep this to a minimum and will be working hard to provide as much information as possible both locally, and to surrounding communities, in a clear and timely manner in advance of any work taking place, and as this project proceeds."

Local bus companies have had to make alterations to their services, with Arriva route seven no longer able to serve Cookham and Cookham Dean.

Locals can expect workmen to be on the site from 7am to 9pm, up to seven days a week when required.

If work outside these times is required, the community will be notified in advance.  

Will this road closure affect you? We want to hear from you at daisy.waites@newsquest.co.uk