PEDESTRIANS and cyclists will have to wait a bit longer if they want to use the Silver Jubilee Bridge footpath at any time of the day.

Part-time weekday closures of the footpath have been in place to ensure the public's safety, as essential repairs and repainting of the bridge took place overhead.

The council had hoped the work would be finished around the end of November (weather permitting) to enable pedestrians and cyclists to cross the bridge at any time of the day.

However, after discussions with the contractor, it has been decided that the footbridge will need to remain closed until approximately December 20.

At its peak around 80 people were involved in the work.

The specialist paint used is designed to withstand the harsh conditions and expected to last for around 20 years.

A council spokesperson said: "Renewal of the paint system on the bridge arch hasn't been carried out on this scale before and as a result the iconic Silver Jubilee Bridge looks glorious.

"In addition to the steel arch painting, a project to replace one of the Silver Jubilee Bridge’s main deck suspension cables has been successfully completed.

"Before closure, more than 70,000 cars were crossing the Silver Jubilee Bridge every day – without an alternative route, a full closure of the bridge to carry out the maintenance needed would have meant severe disruption, so it was just not an option.

"The opening of the Mersey Gateway changed this, providing a unique opportunity to close the bridge for the length of time have needed to give the Silver Jubilee Bridge this much deserved care and attention."

It is expected that the bridge will reopen to vehicles in Summer/Autumn 2020, coinciding with completion of the work to delink the Silver Jubilee Bridge and create a new roundabout on the Bridgewater Expressway in Runcorn.

Until the footpath is reopened pedestrians and cyclists can continue to use the shuttle bus services that operate from 7.30am to 4pm, Monday to Friday.