One of Herefordshire’s oldest bridges on a busy county road is to be strengthened to stop it collapsing.

Dating from the 14th century, the grade II and partly grade II*-listed Mordiford Bridge spans the river Lugg immediately west of Mordiford on the B4224, known as Wallflower Row, which leads to Hampton Bishop and on to Hereford.

Two of the bridge’s seven “flood arches” – extra arches away from the main river course – are to be reinforced. The north parapet above them will be dismantled, and a new reinforced concrete core extending into the parapet constructed, which will then be clad with stone, reused where possible, to match the existing bridge.


A report with the application for listed building consent says the upstream spandrel (surrounding) walls and parapets of the two arches are “heavily weathered from abrasion” due to flood water, which “regularly penetrates them when river levels are high”.

Over time this is washing out finer particles causing the structure to settle, leading eventually to the road surface cracking and breaking up.

If unchecked, the deterioration “is likely to lead to loss of masonry units and eventual collapse”, it warns.

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“Taking into account the ongoing risk of significant flood events, and the increase in flood events expected as a result of climate change, a long-term reinforcement solution to protect and strengthen the bridge is necessary, and therefore like-for-like repairs are not a suitable option,” it says.

But the report rejects the option of widening the bridge at the two arches to match a section of the bridge widened in the 1950s, as this “would have be considerably more expensive” and “would have caused considerable harm to the building’s significance”.

Herefordshire Council’s roadworks map does not show any closures on the route over the next 12 months.

A council spokesperson said: “As with all of our scheduled works, we will do everything we can to keep disruption to a minimum, whilst prioritising the safety of the public and our workers.

“There may be some access restrictions during the works and we are currently planning how we will manage this.”

Comments on the application for listed building consent, numbered 230283, can be made until March 16.