The Vale Bridge in Kilbirnie is set to remain closed for public safety reasons - for now at least.

The bridge over the River Garnock, which sits behind Ladeside Park, was a well-used route linking Glengarnock and the cycle network to Kilbirnie.

Due to safety defects, the bridge was closed almost a year ago, causing a lot of inconvenience to many locals who regularly used the route.

The Vale Bridge is the responsibility of Tata Steel and Sustrans.

In his latest newsletter to constituents, independent councillor Donald L Reid has revealed that a detailed engineering survey of the bridge and an options appraisal has now been published by consulting engineers.

And the report highlights that the bridge remains unsafe for public use, so it will remain closed.

Cllr Reid revealed this week: "Three options are considered in the report. The first two looked at refurbishing the bridge to different standards.

"The third and preferred option was to remove the bridge totally and construct a new crossing at the same point.

"The toal cost of option 3, bridge replacement, was estimated at just over £1.2milion whilst
options 1 and 2 (refurbishment to different standards) were actually more expensive than
total replacement, because of the extensive lifecycle costs in ongoing maintenance."

The Garnock Valley councillor added: "What happens now? The full and detailed report has been sent off to Tata Steel and Sustrans with the request that they reflect on the report and come up with an action plan in early course.

"Will this be a bridge with costs too far? Will we all need to start paddling across the River Garnock? Time will tell!"

He concluded: "I will keep constituents in the loop going forward, but in the meantime the bridge will and must remain closed for public safety reasons."