Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet will decide on the scheme’s progression at its meeting next week.

The bridge would link Stapenhill Hollows to the Oxhay Meadow and from there residents would be able to connect with the town centre via the existing Andressey Bridge or with the leisure centre via the existing Oxhay Bridge. It would provide traffic-free access into town to people living in Brizlincote, Winshill and Stapenhill.

The bridge would be funded through the government’s £23.8 million Burton Towns Fund programme. It would be allocated up to £6.8 million from the programme.

Building a bridge that would be accessible throughout the year and above the flood plain will cost an additional £4 million. The county council will aim to secure funding from other sources, including the government’s ‘Levelling Up’ fund.

Staffordshire County Council would be responsible for design and construction of the bridge and for future maintenance. It may also be possible to take on a corporate sponsor to support maintenance costs, said the council.

A month-long public consultation was carried out in October, with the majority of over 200 respondents in favour of the scheme. Most also favoured lighting on the bridge and connecting paths and additional lighting to mark special occasions.

Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for highways and transport David Williams said: “The new bridge over the River Trent would support the future regeneration of Burton and improve connectivity into the town for walkers and cyclists on the east of the river. It would also attract visitors and boost tourism on the riverside area and businesses located there.

“During the pandemic more people have discovered enjoyment through walking and cycling and we want to sustain that legacy in Staffordshire wherever we can. The new bridge would provide a pleasant traffic-free route for people, providing benefits for communities in the long-term.”

He added: “The funding allocation unfortunately falls short of the bridge we would need to build – one which is accessible all year and that will not be affected by high water levels. We will work with the Towns Fund Board to bid for the additional funding needed.”