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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 February 2006, 11:06 GMT
Local man names new Swale bridge
The Sheppey Crossing
The crossing finally spanned the river at the end of last September
The new bridge over the River Swale in Kent, connecting the Isle of Sheppey with the mainland, is to be called The Sheppey Crossing.

Some 700 people suggested monikers in a competition to name the 100m bridge, which will be opened in the summer.

Lifelong Sheppey resident Reginald Grimwade, 79, came up with the winning entry and will attend the ceremony.

He said: "This bridge is a wonderful development for Sheppey... and will help to secure the island's future."

Local identity

The 115ft (35m) high bridge is part of a Highways Agency scheme to upgrade the A249 between Queenborough on Sheppey and Iwade on the mainland.

It will have four lanes of traffic and carry about 26,000 vehicles a day over the Swale.

At the moment the Isle of Sheppey is cut off from the mainland every time the existing Kingsferry Bridge is raised to allow ships to pass.

The bridge promises to reduce journey times and congestion and support economic regeneration in north Kent.

Minister for transport and MP for South Thanet, Dr Stephen Ladyman, said the name for the new bridge reflected its local identity.

"The Sheppey Crossing is evidence of the government's commitment to improve transport in the area and we look forward to its opening in the summer."



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