A contract for Rhyl’s new foot bridge left out plans for its maintenance.

The new £4.3 million bridge opened in 2013 to connect the town with its marina but plans for its upkeep were overlooked when the contract for its construction were being drawn up, councillors have been told.

Speaking at yesterday’s cabinet meeting Bodelwyddan county councillor and the cabinet member for developing community infrastructure, Richard Mainon asked why there was an update on the Pont y Ddraig project contained in papers before members.

He said: “On Rhyl Harbour I saw a comment that the necessary maintenance is being undertaken to keep the bridge working. It’s a brand new bridge, how have we got to that stage and what exactly is the issue?”

Council chief executive, Judith Greenhalgh, said: “We had some quite lengthy discussions about this at Corporate Executive Team when I first started in the council. And it’s to do with the maintenance contract around the bridge rather than the bridge actually failing.

"But of course it opens and closes regularly so we need to make sure it can do that otherwise the harbour can’t function. And it seems for reasons I don’t know that when we costed that initially in the development of the bridge, and it’s quite a unique design, that we didn’t capture the cost of that full maintenance unfortunately so it’s something we’re going to have to shoulder going forward I’m afraid.”

The council expects to spend £60,000 on the bridge during this financial year.

Rhyl South East county councillor and the cabinet member for highways, Brian Jones, said: “It’s a bespoke bridge and was designed that way, it was subsequently built and then a maintenance contract went on the table. And that was rejected by the people with their hands on the tiller at that time.

“Because it was a bespoke design the point was missed on the maintenance and that is why you’ve got the issue today. This is common knowledge in the Rhyl area, I think this needed airing. It’s not a simple case of maintaining it, the proper maintenance contract was not put in in the beginning.”