Burwell Lode Bridge

The National Trust are proposing a new bridge across Burwell Lode, adjacent to the existing Cock Up bridge. The scheme, which is supported by Sustrans, will allow free movement of walkers, cyclists and horse riders across the waterway, along with disabled access. Grazing animals will have a segregated route for free movement.

The traditional old Cock Up bridge across Burwell Lode, suitable for horses. A similar design can still be seen across Wicken Lode, near Upware.

The Cock Up bridge across Burwell Lode. This modern concrete structure is awkward for cyclists and unsuitable for equestrians, or disabled users.

The Environment Agency built this lifting bridge across the Lode, next to the Cock Up bridge, to allow access for maintenance vehicles.

The Environment Agency bridge, across the Burwell Lode, being extensively refurbished during 2012.

A new path is being layed up to the Cock Up bridge across Burwell Lode. This is part of National Cycle Network Route 11 and is intended as a temporary crossing for cyclists until funding can be found to comlete the project.

There has been extensive trimming of the tall trees around the Burwell Cock Up bridge area.

A ramp has been built, adjacent to the Burwell Cock Up bridge, during the winter of 2012/3. This, it is hoped, will become the access route for the new bridge, if it is ever built!

The completion of the Lodes Way, forming part of the National Cycle Network route 11, depends upon a new crossing over Burwell Lode. Although the Lodes way has been declared open, following the completion of new bridges across Swaffham Bulbeck and Reach Lodes, the crossing of Burwell Lode is not accessible to horses or disabled users.

This long distance path will be suitable for walkers, cyclists, horse riders and carriage drivers, as well as being reasonably wheelchair accessible too, if the planned bridge can be completed.

Although planning permission has been granted for the construction work, funding is not yet in place and in these times it is by no means certain when, or if, it will be found.

A bridge has crossed Burwell Lode at this point for as long as anyone can remember. The traditional wooden Cock Up bridge that use to stand here is depicted in Eric Ennion's classic book, 'Adventurer's Fen'. This was suitable for horse drawn transport, the slats on the sloping ramps providing traction for the hooves.

The proposed new replacement will be a much grander affair, with gently sloping gradients on the approach, for ease of use by bicycles, pushchairs and wheelchairs. It will also feature a segregated lane for the free movement of grazing animals across the Lode.

Alongside the Cock Up bridge is an Environment Agency lifting bridge, used for access to maintain the Lodes and their banks. This has recently been refurbished. Presumably it will needed for construction traffic if the work goes ahead on the planned design.

An earth ramp has been built up, currently just a mound, but it is hoped it will form the access route to the new Lode crossing.

The Internal Drainage Board ditches have been diverted around the proposed construction site, as well, ready for work to begin in earnest, should funds be secured for completion of the project.

A number of tall trees have also been trimmed back around the bridge area.