Concern has been expressed at condition of the historic Kilcarn Bridge outside Navan, which has been closed on safety grounds.
The bridge has been used by pedestrians and by fishermen since it was closed to traffic, with the opening of a new bridge across the Boyne, nearly 40 years ago.
Fears have been expressed that the 400 year old structure is in danger of collapsing.
Cllr Joe Reilly said the bridge, which is one of the oldest Boyne River crossings is in danger of falling into the river.
“Nowhere else would a bridge of such an important heritage be allowed to disintegrate to the point where is in danger of collapsing.
“The present structure dates from the late 16th, early17th century and has been used for not only crossing but also for industrial use where a water wheel provided energy to a local brewery.
“I will be raising the issue with the Meath County Council Hertigage officer asking for emergency repairs be carried out immediately so as to halt this famous bridge further detoriation.”
Local election candidate, Paddy Pryle,pointed out that the OPW had carried out a clean-up at the bridge recently.
“They cleared away logs and timber that had built up on the Trim side - they had come downriver with flooding.
“When they lifted away the rubbish, it revealed a lot of damage to the foundations of the bridge.
A spokesperson for Meath County Council said Old Kilcarn bridge was closed on safety grounds following an inspection of damage to the piers after flooding events over the winter.
Consultants have been appointed to carry a design of various possible remedial work options. The options available to the council will be costed and, subject to funding being available, a suitably qualified contractor will be engaged to undertake the chosen remedial works.
At Monday’s meeting of Meath County Council concern over the state of the bridge was expressed by Cllrs Shane Cassells, Joe Reilly and Jim Holloway.
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