SCOTTISH contractor Barr has made a rare foray south of the border for a roads project.
The Ayr-based firm is one of six contenders pitching for the £8 million second phase of the South Stockton link road.
Also in the line-up for the Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council deal are Galliford, Birse, Kvaerner, Morrison and a mystery bidder.
The council originally set a tender return deadline of August 25. But this has been extended by a week after one of the bidders asked for more time to price the job.
Site work is due to start in October on the contract, which includes a 1.6 km stretch of dual carriageway from Ingleby Barwick to Bowesfield and a bridge over the River Tees.
The final stage of the project, which is the only major new road scheme in the North-East, takes the link road on to central Stockton.
The former Cleveland County Council built the first phase of the route - a short dual carriageway and an isolated bridge - in 1994, but the Conservative government of the day abandoned the rest of the scheme.
The entire project is expected to be completed by December 2005.