A LANDMARK tilting bridge ground to a halt today after developing an electrical fault.

The £22m Millennium Bridge, nicknamed the Blinking Eye which spans the River Tyne between Newcastle and Gateshead, broke down at lunchtime.

It was believed to be the first time the mechanism has failed since it opened in 2001.

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A spokesman for Gateshead Council said: "The Gateshead Millennium Bridge has developed an electrical fault."

At 6.15pm the council said its engineers had been able to tilt the bridge, and it was re-opened to cyclists and pedestrians.

“Sorry for any inconvenience,” said a spokesperson.