Roads and Bridges

Second Severn River Crossing, South Wales, UK

John Laing was a co-developer and is joint major shareholder in Severn River Crossing plc, the project company responsible for the construction and operation of the new bridges linking England and Wales. The Second Severn Crossing was opened in 1996 as part of a Design, Build, Finance and Operate concession for the new 5.2 km cable-stayed river crossing that also includes operation and maintenance of the Severn Bridge, the original suspension bridge.


During the mid-1980s, studies and public consultations resulted in the decision to construct a second crossing 5 km downstream of the existing suspension bridge.

This was in response to increasing traffic volumes and frequent congestion problems on the original Severn Bridge, made worse by occasional high winds, breakdowns and accidents, at times leading to closure of the old bridge for safety reasons.

Royal Assent was given to the Severn Bridges Act 1992 enabling the Concession and construction of the new bridge to start in April 1992.

The Second Severn Crossing was opened on 5 June 1996 by His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales. The design of the new bridge offers a dual three-lane road, which is able to remain open even in high winds.

Ongoing activity

Severn River Crossing Plc oversees the operations of the Crossings, and makes sure they are kept in the best possible condition. This includes performing regular maintenance work and carrying out any necessary repairs as well as operating tolls.

Second Severn Crossing