WORK to renovate one of the region’s most famous landmarks is under way.

Work has started on a new viewing area at Middlesbrough’s Transporter Bridge.

Installation of the Winding House viewing area and a revamp of the attraction’s visitor centre are part of plans to improve the visitor experience at the bridge, one of Teesside’s most popular tourist attractions.

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The glass-panelled viewing area will give visitors a chance to better see the workings and mechanisms of the bridge, which celebrated its centenary last year.

Work on the viewing area is the first phase in a renovation project funded by a £2.6m Lottery grant.

The Winding House will be further improved with panels that allow visitors to illuminate different areas.

Accompanying audio and text commentary will provide an insight into the workings of the bridge, which is used by thousands of pedestrians and drivers every year and is one of only six bridges of its kind in the world.

A revamp of the visitor centre, which was opened by Fred Dibnah in 2000, will result in the installation of technology, interactive games and exhibits, as well as a webcam by the end of next year.

The £2.6m grant will also fund work on the bridge. Next year, two glass lifts will be fitted that will lead up to a new bridge walkway. The bridge’s gondola will be restored and an extensive education, learning and events programme will be introduced. Bridge education officer Tosh Warwick said: “These developments will not only cement the bridge’s place as a leading visitor attraction, but will also ensure that people of all ages will be able to experience and learn from the area’s manufacturing and engineering heritage.

“The range of new resources, activities and events will put the bridge firmly in the forefront as one of the region’s key learning and community locations.”

The bridge will stay open throughout the work.