‘Unfeasible’ Northern Ireland to Scotland bridge plans put to bed
A feasibility study into proposals for a bridge or tunnel between Scotland and Northern Ireland is expected to conclude that the project is “unfeasible” due to forecasted costs and engineering challenges.
Reports in The Telegraph outline that transport expert Sir Peter Hendy, who was asked by the government to examine connections between the different parts of the UK, had concluded the project was not currently viable.
The BBC said it now understands the government will agree with the report’s recommendation when it is released this week.
A government source said Sir Peter had examined the costs of a fixed link to Northern Ireland and found “it would be technically very challenging at the moment”.
“That’s not to say it won’t become viable at some point in the future, but at the moment it would be very, very difficult and expensive,” the source told the paper.
The Department for Transport told the BBC: “We don’t comment on speculation. The Union Connectivity Review will be published shortly.”
Plans for some kind of link between Northern Ireland and Scotland stretch back as far as the 1890s.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson had wanted to build a link between the two countries to strengthen ties after the upheavals caused by Brexit and ordered a review into the proposals earlier this year.
Two potential routes for a link were suggested - from Portpatrick to Larne, or near Campbeltown to the Antrim coast.