GOLD medal-winning Paralympian Deb Criddle officially opened the new Mill Lane Bridge in her home village of Trull.

The 46-year-old equestrian, who claimed a team gold and two silvers in the dressage and individual events at this summer’s games, was joined by county councillor Stephen Martin-Scott and Trull Parish Council chairman Jo Wooldridge for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the site.

Speaking at the event, which was also attended by a gathering of villagers, Cllr Martin-Scott described the process of installing the road bridge after the removal of the old crossing last month.

He touched on the historic merit of the previous bridge, which had been in place for almost 200 years and is thought to be the work of prominent Victorian engineer James Green.

Having been carefully dismantled, the cast iron bridge will now take up new residence along a restored section of the Grand Western Canal at Nynehead, near Wellington, where it will take

pride of place among a host of industrial artefacts.

Thanking everyone who helped deliver the project, including contractors Dyer & Butler and the heritage team who arranged the old bridge’s relocation, Cllr Martin-Scott said: “Let me say a big thankyou to the immediate community – you’ve been very patient and very helpful.

“Bridges bring people and communities together, and may this one do so for many, many years to come.”