Davy wins £2m lifting bridge job

Bill Clark, Davy Markham Ltd CEO, in the firm's Darnall workshop. Picture: Marie Caley
Bill Clark, Davy Markham Ltd CEO, in the firm's Darnall workshop. Picture: Marie Caley

Sheffield heavy engineering firm DavyMarkham has won a £2m contract to help build a replacement lifting bridge carrying a busy ‘A’ road over a canal in the Wirral.

The Darnall-based company will supply all the mechanical and electric engineering components for the project which is set to ease congestion on the A554 between the 12 Quays Ferry Terminal, the M53 and the Mersey Tunnel.

The £10m bridge, set for completion in September next year, will rise vertically to make way for large vessels.

DavyMarkham chief executive Bill Clark said it would safeguard jobs and skills and make the firm more attractive to graduates.

DavyMarkham supported all three firms shortlisted, of the six original bids, for the contract with Wirral Council, guaranteeing the work, he added.

“We are probably the UK’s leaders in the design of lifting bridges so it is not surprising we won it. But I’m pleased, it will help us retain skills and make us more interesting to graduates, whom we are a recruiting.”

In July, Mr Clark said the company was set to break even this financial year after a period of hardship, thanks to a recovery plan under an enthusiastic new owner. Industrial group Hughes-Armstrong took over in 2014, when it was struggling after years of losing money, and facing the risk of administration.

Today the firm has big ambitions. It is currently bidding for the contract for a tunnel boring machine more than 26ft in diameter and 328ft long for a new sewer under the Thames and hopes to win tunnelling work on HS2.

The firm helped build a Channel Tunnel boring machine in the 1980s.