The previous footbridge across the Char had reached the end of its maintainable life. The brief to renew it with a limited budget became an exciting prospect of collaboration with the Dorset District Council engineers and Coast and Countryside Rangers.
The opportunity for a new footbridge in this location is to renew the pleasure in crossing a river whilst allowing for rest and admiring this unique landscape. The focal point is not the bridge but its surrounding, the structure becomes an occasion to be in this place and a celebration of it.
The design creates two distinctly shaped piers responding to the distinct banks. They join and overlap in the middle of the river, generating a wider area for rest, contemplation, or just feeding the ducks and swans. An opened grilled surface separating the two piers enhances the joining, and allows a playful view of the flow underneath.
The project was funded by Arts Council England, Dorset AONB, Coastal Ranger, Jurassic Coast Arts Programme, Section 106 (West Dorset District Council), Weymouth Relief Road Improvement Group, and the Fine Foundation and has been awarded the 2012 Olympics Inspire Mark as well as an award from the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE).