A major milestone in the construction of the £145m Gull Wing bridge in Lowestoft is set to be marked next week.

The main and final bascule span of the town's long-awaited third crossing is set to arrive from the Netherlands on Monday.

As leading building and civil engineering contractor Farrans Construction oversees work on the bridge on behalf of Suffolk County Council, a council spokesman said: "The main bascule span for the Gull Wing bridge in Lowestoft is currently expected to arrive by barge at the construction site on Lake Lothing on Monday, March 4 at approximately 10am."

With the barge carrying the bascule span being towed by the ANTEOS, timings may change due to weather conditions.

Motorists are being warned that the existing bascule bridge "will have to have an extended opening time of around 15 minutes" to allow the barge through - so people are being urged to factor this into journey plans around Lowestoft.

The council spokesman added: "The Gull Wing bascule bridge span is 39.5m long, 22m wide and 35m tall and will weigh about 1,120 tonnes when delivered to site and positioned.

"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.

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

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

"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."