It has been hailed as an historic day for Lowestoft as the final bascule span of the town's long-awaited third crossing was welcomed during "amazing scenes." 

As the crowds gathered and hundreds of onlookers cheered, the "most challenging" and "most impressive of all the Gull Wing deliveries" arrived from the Netherlands.

With the main bascule span for the £145m Gull Wing bridge - which is "set to transform" the town's skyline - arriving via barge on Monday morning, stunning new drone footage has highlighted the landmark occasion.

The 39.5m long, 22m wide and 35m tall bascule span arrived at the construction site on Lake Lothing in Lowestoft following its North Sea crossing, as it was towed by the ANTEOS.

Lowestoft-based company CHPV Offshore Film & Photography - who have been documenting continuing progress of the town's long-awaited third crossing since 2021 - captured the historic arrival.

Lowestoft Journal: The final section of the £145m Gull Wing bridge arrives in Lowestoft. Picture: CHPV Offshore Film & PhotographyThe final section of the £145m Gull Wing bridge arrives in Lowestoft. Picture: CHPV Offshore Film & Photography (Image: CHPV Offshore Film & Photography)

These drone images and video showcase the Gull Wing arrival into the Port of Lowestoft on March 4.

Delivered by Suffolk County Council and built by Farrans Construction, the bascule span will weigh about 1120 tonnes when the final lifting section is positioned into place.

This is made up of 750 tonnes of permanent structural steelwork and an additional 370 tonnes of temporary ballast to ensure the bridge stability during installation.

Lowestoft Journal:

Currently sitting on North Quay near to the bridge construction site ready to be lifted into position, Lake Lothing will now be closed to marine traffic for three weeks from this Friday, March 8 while the main bascule span is installed.

Lowestoft Journal:

An additional counterweight of heavyweight concrete will be placed within the J-beams during the installation and commissioning phase of about 380 tonnes resulting in the total weight of the bridge during operation being around 1100 tonnes.

The bridge - once installed - will sit clear of the highest tide by 12m, meaning that the tips of the J-beams will be well over 50m above the sea below.

Lowestoft Journal:

When the bridge is rolled back in the open position, the end of the bridge span that carries the road will be over 60m above the tide below.

The completed bascule bridge will be the largest rolling bascule bridge in the world lifted using hydraulic cylinders.

Lowestoft Journal:

When the bridge opens it will provide an essential link from Waveney Drive (south) to Denmark Road and Peto Way (north) of Lake Lothing.

Watching on was Mayor of Lowestoft, Sonia Barker, who hailed the "Amazing scenes" at the bridge on X (formerly Twitter) "as the last piece of the new Gull Wing bridge came through."

Also keenly observing the "historic" occasion was members of Lowestoft Central - the town's Community Rail project rejuvenating Lowestoft Station - who said on X: "It really has been an historic day for Lowestoft."

On X, ABP Port's said that the Port of Lowestoft Marine Team had proudly helped the "safe delivery."

With the arrival "bringing the completion of this significant infrastructure project one step closer" according to the county council, Simon Bretherton, Project Director at Suffolk County Council, said: "As well as the most challenging, this is the most impressive of all the Gull Wing deliveries and the huge J beams will transform Lowestoft’s skyline.

Lowestoft Journal:

"Over the coming days, we will begin positioning the bascule span ready for its installation.

"There are still challenges and risks to overcome, but, once installed, we will enter into the final commissioning phase and begin making preparations for opening the bridge to the public."