ENGINEERS renovating a footbridge in Baildon contemplated hiring a Chinook helicopter to remove the old structure due to its tricky location.

The bridge over the Guiseley to Shipley railway line, at Baildon, is about to reopen after extensive renovation work which almost required the services of a Chinook helicopter

Representatives from Baildon Walkers are Welcome, Bradford MDC, Baildon Town Council , Friends of Baildon Station, Baildon Sustainable Transport Group, Northern Trains, Network Rail and other community groups will formally come together to reopen the footbridge which connects Fyfe Lane with Hawthorn View as well as the path along the River Aire with the centre of Baildon.

The route is deemed an important feature for local residents in the Fyfe Lane area and for walking groups like Walkers are Welcome who use the route for guided walks.

The major engineering task has been undertaken by contractors for Network Rail.

A spokesman for Network Rail said it had been a difficult task getting a crane to the site which was in the centre of a residential area and crosses a steep cutting and in the end used two road-rail cranes which were driven along the tracks.


Jonny Ham, scheme project manager for IP SNE Renewals said: “This was a challenging location due to the steep cutting and surrounding urban area narrowing our options and using two road rail cranes was one of the few possibilities that would’ve worked for us. We even looked at lifting it out using a Chinook helicopter."

Baildon Walkers are Welcome is one of three Walkers are Welcome communities in Bradford. Bingley and Burley in Wharfedale are the two others.

The reopening ceremony will take place on Wednesday, April 3, at 11.15am.