One of the last pictures of the suspension bridge, shortly before it collapsed in October 2010.
One of the last pictures of the suspension bridge, shortly before it collapsed in October 2010. CHRIS ISON

Council swings into action

REMNANTS salvaged from the wreckage of Mount Morgan's historic swinging bridge will be used in the construction of a covered sign at the site of where it once stood.

Councillors have voted to build a small memorial to the bridge which collapsed in controversial circumstances during work to erect a fence to prevent people from walking on it.

Timber and cables rescued from the Dee River will feature in a structure which will contain old photographs and information about the unique bridge, which was erected in 1937 as an access to the gold mine.

Rockhampton Regional Council will now seek dollar-for-dollar funding from the Department of Environment and Resource Management up to the value of $60,000 to pay for the interpretive feature, which will also include seating for picnickers.

Cr Sandra O'Brien, the divisional councillor for Mount Morgan, said the site was visited by tour buses and it was essential to cater for tourists.

"I think this is a good outcome for the community. There's been a lot of consultation and this is what the community wants," she said.

The collapse of the bridge, on October 6, 2010, sparked outrage in the town, with many convinced the council had deliberately sabotaged it because it would cost too much to repair.

Although there were public meetings which called for the council to build a new bridge from the materials that could be salvaged, councillors balked at the cost, estimated initially at $750,000.

The council blamed a lack of maintenance over the previous 20 years and an engineers' report commissioned by DERM blamed the collapse on the failure of anchors. It did not apportion blame.



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