Reconstruction of Wootton Bridge 1973
The future of the A3054 Newport to Ryde Road at its crossing point at Wootton Bridge and the future use of the Millpond. The Isle of Wight Council commenced negotiations with the widening and reconstruction of the bridge with the landowners, the Trustees of the Fleming Estate.
Ownership of the remaining area covered by water at “Lakeside” will be retained by the Fleming Estate with the idea of a fresh water fishery being established above the reconstructed bridge.
The design of the substructure of the new bridge will be such that fresh water can be retained above the bridge at all states of the tide, but with the facility for periodic emptying at times of low tide and allowing it to refill with fresh water over a period.
The proposed water level will approximate to that of high water of spring tides, minor adjustments being possible by varying the height of the weir over which the surface water runoff from the catchment area to the south would be allowed to flow into Wootton Creek. No salt water will be permitted to flow under the bridge into “Lakeside” at periods of high tide.
The maintenance and operation of the penstock and weir would remain the responsibility of the Fleming Estate once having been provided by the County Council.
In 1971 the Directors of Messrs. Fulljames and Still of Wimborne, Dorset, owners of Lakeside Inn and Wootton Creek Fairway Committee, felt that there was a measure of concern felt on a number of matters relating to the proposals; particularly the silting of the bed of the creek below the bridge which might result if water is not released at regular intervals from the Millpond, and silting of the Millpond itself and the accumulation of weed.
Following discussion between all interested parties the County Surveyor informed the parties, namely the Fleming Estate, Messrs. Fulljames and Still, and Wootton Creek Fairway Committee, that as an experiment the arches under the existing bridge should be dammed with Lakeside empty in order to prevent the flow of sea water into it. It was hoped that to assess more accurately the rate at which the lake would fill naturally with fresh water, together with any tendency for silting to take place either within the lake or downstream of the bridge in Wootton Creek proper.
The dams were to be placed in position during the last week of March when advantage can be taken of the opportunity afforded by neap tides. Quite clearly the longer this particular experiment can run the better, particularly in respect of accurate assessment being made of silting, but it maybe that it will have to be discontinued for the summer season and recommenced in the autumn.
Source: Extracts from Isle of Wight County Council letters, March 1973This page was last edited on: 4th March, 2015 06:17:04