The display is in three parts.
See files below for the full story.
It Easter in 2005 the engineers charged with checking the safety of the Bridge in a routine inspection were unable to get an electric charge to go right across the Bridge through the reinforcing iron in the concrete. On further inspection they discovered anaerobic decay in the iron in some places. As it was impossible to predict where or the extent of the damage was they recommended that the Bridge should be closed immediately. The Irish Lights informed Mizen Tourism Co-op that the Bridge was to be closed with immediate effect. With the summer season coming, Sue Hill and Stephen O'Sullivan lobbied ceaselessly to find a fast temporary solution. The engineers came up with a plan to create a scaffolding bridge that would not put weight on the existing bridge. The estimate was €60,000 and six weeks. The pressure was on to get that funded. The Irish Lights were demonstrating with a helicopter that they didn't need the bridge. It seemed that the Mizen |Project had come to an end. Sue and Stephen stepped up the lobbying and were rewarded by a last minute accord between the Irish Lights and Cork County Council who went halves on it. We were so grateful.
The scaffolding solution had a 3-5 year lifespan. The race was on to get funding for the reconstruction of the Bridge. Stephen and Sue were relentless in their lobbying. Everywhere they went the answer was No! At the very last minute in the fifth year, Martin Riordan, Cork County Manager, relented and agreed to put together a plan for the reconstruction. Failte Ireland agreed to invest EU development funds and the Irish Lights made a contribution. Cork County Councillors, who have always been the most steadfast supporters and investors in the development of this community project, became the clients and made a contribution to the demolition and reconstruction of the Bridge. This was an award winning project.
The Bridge was closed for 18 months one hundred years after the first bridge was built. The story is in the files below.