Mid Wales

Crickhowell Bridge damaged during police car chase

Damage to the Crickhowell Bridge
Image caption A wall and a parapet were damaged in the crash, said the council

A historic bridge over the River Usk in Powys has been badly damaged after a collision in a police car chase.

The Crickhowell Bridge, which dates back to 1706, suffered damage to a wall and a parapet early on Sunday.

Police investigating the theft of quad bikes in the area said they gave "brief pursuit" to the vehicle which crashed into it.

Powys Council said it would liaise with historic monuments agency Cadw over repairs.

Officers are questioning two youths and appealing for information about two more.

A council spokesman said the temporary barriers erected on the bridge - a scheduled ancient monument - after the crash had now been replaced by more sturdy concrete blocks and the bridge was under traffic light control.

No lights

"The bridge was damaged in the early hours on Sunday morning," said the spokesman. "A section of the wall was taken out and a parapet has been damaged.

"An investigation is under way into the work that will need to be done but it's too early to say how long this will take or at what cost."

Meanwhile, Dyfed-Powys Police said it was questioning two youths and looking for information about two others following two instances of quad bike thefts nearby.

The bikes were taken some time overnight on Saturday 29 from two separate premises in Pengenffordd, said the force.

Insp Mark Davies said a member of the public reported two quad bikes travelling behind another vehicle with no lights or helmets early on Sunday.

Patrol car

Image caption The council said it would liaise with Cadw on the bridge repair

The vehicles were located by a police patrol, he said, which did not at this stage pursue them due to safety concerns.

Insp Davies continued: "A short while later the patrol car again found the two quad bikes abandoned, one having crashed into a wall.

"Another patrol car has then seen the other vehicle which also crashed following a brief pursuit by officers."

Insp Davies said two men, aged 22 and 18, were arrested on suspicion of theft.

He added: "We are also appealing for any information on two other youths who we believe were involved in these thefts, aged between 16 and 19 years of age.

"A search using specialist teams and the force's helicopter was also undertaken as the vehicle crashed close to the River Usk but no one was found."

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at Brecon on 101.

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