Page last updated at 15:45 GMT, Wednesday, 14 July 2010 16:45 UK
'People's bridge' linking Cardiff and Vale opens
The first cyclists over the bridge after its official opening
The first cyclists over the bridge after its official opening

The £5m Pont y Werin bridge linking Cardiff Bay and Penarth has been officially opened.

The River Ely bridge was finished in April but plans to open it to the public in June had to be postponed for completion work.

The design incorporates a 20m opening section to allow river traffic to pass.

The bridge also provides the final link completing the six-and-a-half mile (10.5km) circular Bay Edge Walkway and cycle route.

Funding for the three year project has come from the Welsh Assembly Government, Sustrans, the Cardiff Harbour Authority, along with Cardiff and Vale of Glamorgan councils.

Sustrans is using a £50m grant from the Big Lottery Fund to create new walking and cycling routes across the UK to connect communities and help people make more local, everyday journeys by foot or by bike.

Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones cut the ribbon on Wednesday
Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones cut the ribbon on Wednesday

The opening had been postponed from June due to what the Cardiff council described as "a logistical delay in receiving certain supplies for the completion of the bridge."

Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones cut the ribbon at the official opening, saying he hoped it would be a "valuable asset" to residents on both sides of the river.

"Encouraging more people walk and cycle across Wales will help reduce their dependence on the car, and contribute to cutting CO2 emissions," he said.

"We are all aware of the need to reduce our carbon footprint, and walking and cycling instead of driving can help to make a real difference."

Among those in attendance were Jason Stone, Sybil Williams, Lydia Harris and Tim Burns who were nominated by the public to appear on the bridge's portrait benches.

Cyclist Nicole Cooke and former Paralympian Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson are also portrayed on the benches but were unable to attend the official opening. Denise Cooke represented her daughter, while Baroness Grey-Thompson sent a message of support.

Cllr Delme Bowen, Cardiff council's cabinet member for traffic and transportation, said: "As chairman of the Pont y Werin steering group it's fantastic to see three years of hard work coming to fruition and I would like to thank all partner organisations for their support.

"The bridge will make a huge difference to pedestrians and cyclists in Cardiff and The Vale of Glamorgan and I can't wait to see their reaction and get their feedback about the bridge."

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