LETTERS From Louis Fitzpatrick-Robertson, Newport:
I READ in last week’s CP the delivery of the new floating bridge is likely to be delayed by two years.
I would be grateful if I could air my strong views on the design of the current family of bridges. The bridge is boring and is used solely by those who have to get to the other side of the river. As a Cowes resident for the past 76 years, less some for the war, education and National Service, I well remember when the bridge was a tourist attraction, as well as being a means of transport.
The reason? Passengers were not confined to the dreary benches which line the covered accommodation at vehicle deck level but could climb any one of four sets of stairs to what is now just the roof over the passenger accommodation, where they found a wooden deck with rails and seating accommodation with an unrivalled view of the working river
What can be done? Somewhere there must be design drawings of the old bridges. Use them and restore the old elevated decks on both sides of the new bridge.
They could be a money-earner as opposed to loser if one staircase on each side could be entered only by a coin-operated turnstile, with the other two allowing passengers to descend only. At a stroke, Cowes and the Island has another tourist attraction.
No camera-carrying visitor could afford to miss the opportunity of spending 20 or 50p to take pictures of a unique view.