A main bridge linking Chester city centre and Handbridge has been closed for essential works.

Work is under way on Old Dee Bridge to replace traffic lights which 'have reached the end of their operational lifespan and are in urgent need of replacement', according to Cheshire West and Chester Council.

The adjoining pavement will also be resurfaced during the time the bridge is closed to all road traffic.

While no vehicles will be allowed access during the works, which are expected to last from February 19 until March 1, it is hoped pedestrians and cyclists will be able to use the pavement for some of this time.

During the closure, which will run round the clock, motor vehicles are advised to travel via Grosvenor Bridge over the River Dee, while in the event of a full closure, pedestrians and cyclists can use either Grosvenor Bridge or Queens Park Suspension Bridge.

The council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Transport and Highways, Councillor Karen Shore said: “As the bridge is a scheduled monument, Historic England has been consulted about the works and provided scheduled monument consent to replace the existing traffic lights with low energy replacements, and for us to also undertake the resurfacing works.

“Any impacts on the local road network will be kept to a minimum to avoid inconvenience caused by these essential works.”

On the first morning of the works, traffic appeared to be coping well with the detour, mainly as it is half-term this week.

Other major works ongoing in Chester are emergency repairs being carried out by Cadent on Liverpool Road near The Queen's Lower School, which are due to last until February 27 and have closed the road to Chester-bound traffic, and Cadent Road near Dee Banks School, as part of a multi-million-pound Severn Trent Water project to create a new underground pipe.