Poole's Twin Sails bridge in final tests

Construction of the bridge started in October 2010

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A new £37m bridge in Dorset is being put through its paces ahead of its opening early next year.

The Twin Sails bridge in Poole has been lifting for the first time during a rigorous testing process.

Spanning Backwater Channel between Hamworthy and Poole port, the bridge will unlock 26 hectares of brownfield land for regeneration.

It is hoped the Twin Sails will start taking its first vehicles and foot passengers early in 2012.

2,000 homes

Council leader Elaine Atkinson said people were excited about the new bridge.

"This is linking two communities... it is bringing Poole together," she said.

Construction started in October 2010.

The bridge deck and lifting leaves are made up of 41 separate sections of steel which have been welded together on site.

The council believes up to 2,000 homes could be built on the brownfield land over the next 10 to 15 years.

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