A free daily bus service will continue shuttling pedestrians & cyclists between the Tyne pedestrian tunnel entrances in East Howdon, Wallsend & Jarrow entrance after the Tyne pedestrian until at least the Summer of 2016.
The tunnel closed on the 20th of May 2013 for a major refurbishment programme costing around 7 million pounds, however, the then main contractor for the works on the Tyne Pedestrian Tunnel, (GB Building Solutions Ltd) recently went into administration, causing all work on the Wallsend & Jarrow side of the site to stop.
In effect this means that the work is currently expected to last a further twelve months, taking it into Summer 2016, though a full works programme still has to be agreed with all new contractors and subcontractors as well as other businesses involved in the work, making this target date a provisional only one.
The free daytime shuttle bus services and the night services for shift workers, will continue to operate throughout the closure of the tunnels.
The refurbishment of the pedestrian & cycle tunnels comes not long after the Queen officially opened the brand new multi million pound Tyne Vehicle Tunnel and members of the public in Wallsend voiced their concern at the state of the pedestrian tunnel in Willington Quay, Wallsend and Jarrow on the other side of the river Tyne.
The free half hourly timetabled replacement shuttle bus service will operate between 6am and 8pm, seven days a week, while an overnight bus service will be in operation for pre-registered night shift workers.
The bus picks up and drops of passengers and their bikes further along on the left hand side of Bewick Street (A187) opposite the now fenced off Pedestrian tunnel.
The following pictures show large holes in the tiled walls, exposed rusty steel and cracked concrete and a large hole is seen to be covered by a piece of scrap wood with rusty water stains down the tunnels tiled walls.