- Runcorn Railway Bridge
bridge_name=Runcorn Railway Bridge
caption=Runcorn Railway Bridge
Liverpoolbranch of the West Coast Main Line
designer= William Baker
The Runcorn Railway Bridge crosses the
River Merseyat Runcorn Gap from Runcornto Widnesin Cheshire, England. It was built for the London and North Western Railwayto a design by William Baker, chief engineer of the railway company.Cowan, C. A. "Crossing the Runcorn Gap, Vol. 3: Runcorn Railway Bridge", Halton Borough Council, 1990.] It is a Grade II* listed building. [http://www.imagesofengland.org.uk/search/details.aspx?pid=1&id=56057 Images of England] , accessed 17 July 2007]
In 1846 the
Grand Junction RailwayCompany obtained an Act of Parliamentto build a bridgeto cross Runcorn Gap. A time limit of 7 years was imposed. Shortly after obtaining the Act the Company amalgamated with others to form the London and North Western Railway. Other projects took precedence, the 7 years time limit passed, and so the powers to build the bridge lapsed.
In 1861 Parliamentary approval for a bridge was again obtained as part of building a line from Aston, to the south-east of Runcorn where it joined the line from
Creweto Warringtonat Weaver Junction, to the west of Widnes, where it joined the line from Warrington to Garstonat DittonJunction. Work commenced in 1863 and the first stone was laid in 1864. The bridge was completed by 1868 and on May 21st there was an introductory opening when the contractor's locomotive 'Cheshire' drew 20 wagons over the bridge.Starkey, H. F. "Old Runcorn", Halton Borough Council, 1990, p. 170.] It was formally opened for traffic on 10th October. The first goods traffic crossed it on February 1 1869and the first passenger train crossed on April 1st of that year.
The bridge consists of three
wrought ironspans of convert|305|ft|m|0, each on two sandstone abutments with foundations at a depth of about convert|45|ft|m|0 below water level. It carries a double line of tracks, with a footpath for pedestrians on its eastern side. It has a clearance of convert|75|ft|m|0 above the high water mark to allow sailing ships to pass beneath it. There are 6 lattice girders, two to each span. Each girder contains 700 tons of iron and is fastened by 48,115 rivets. From the north side of the river the bridge is approached by a viaduct of 49 arches, then a short piece of embankment, followed by 16 more arches. From the south it is approached by a viaduct of 33 arches. On its completion, the bridge was the longest of its time. [cite web | title= West Bank Promenade Conservation Area | publisher= Halton Borough Council | url= http://www2.halton.gov.uk/pdfs/environment/planning/westbankpromenade | format=
The bridge is named after Aethelfleda because the southern abutments and pier were built on the site of the Saxon castle erected by her in 915. Parts of the bridge are
castellatedto reflect this. There are three shields above the footway showing, from the southern end, the Coat of Armsof the City of London, Britannia(from the crest of the railway company) and the Liver Birdof Liverpool. Because of the crest the bridge is also known as the Britannia Railway Bridge.
In the 1890s the
Manchester Ship Canalwas built, passing under the bridge. The footway was closed in 1965. The bridge is still in use today for rail traffic on the Liverpoolbranch of the West Coast Main Line.
Listed buildings in Runcorn, Cheshire
*"The Bridging of Runcorn Gap", Halton Borough Council, 1978
*Cowan, C. A. "Crossing the Runcorn Gap, Vol. 1: Runcorn Ferry and Hale Ford", Halton Borough Council, 1990.
*Cowan, C. A. "Crossing the Runcorn Gap, Vol. 2: Early Bridging Proposals", Halton Borough Council, 1992.
*Thompson, Dave. "Bridging the Mersey: A Pictorial History", European Library, Zaltbommel, 2000.
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Widnes-Runcorn Transporter Bridge — The Widnes Runcorn Transporter Bridge crossed the river Mersey and Manchester Ship Canal linking the towns of Runcorn and Widnes. It was completed in 1905 and was Britain s first transporter bridge and the largest of its type ever built in the… … Wikipedia
Runcorn Bridge — may refer to:*Silver Jubilee Bridge, also known as Runcorn Widnes Bridge *Runcorn Railway Bridge *Widnes Runcorn Transporter Bridge … Wikipedia
Runcorn — infobox UK place country = England static static image caption=Runcorn Silver Jubilee Bridge official name = Runcorn latitude = 53.328 longitude = 2.712 population = 61,252 population density = unitary england = Halton region = North West England … Wikipedia
Listed buildings in Runcorn, Cheshire — Runcorn has a number of listed buildings. [cite web |url=http://www2.halton.gov.uk/content/environment/planning/forwardplanning/listedconservationareas/listedbuildings?a=5441 |title=Listed Buildings in Halton |accessdate=2007 04 19… … Wikipedia
St Helens and Runcorn Gap Railway — St Helens and Runcorn Gap Railway, later known as St Helens Railway, was an early railway company in Lancashire, England, which opened in 1833. It ran originally from the town of St Helens to the area which would later develop into the town of… … Wikipedia
List of railway bridges and viaducts in the United Kingdom — This is a list of viaducts and significant bridges of the United Kingdom s railways, past and present.A* Angarrack Viaduct, near Hayle, Cornwall * Albert Edward Bridge, at Coalbrookdale, Shropshire * Appleford Railway Bridge, River Thames,… … Wikipedia
Port of Runcorn — River Mersey and the Port of Runcorn in the late 18th century The Port of Runcorn is in the town of Runcorn, Cheshire, England. It is situated to the west of a point where the River Mersey narrows, known as Runcorn Gap. Originally opening… … Wikipedia
Mersey Railway — Sign from the Water Street entrance to James Street … Wikipedia
Chester railway station — This article is about the railway station in England. For the station in Pennsylvania, see Chester Transportation Center. Chester … Wikipedia
Liverpool and Manchester Railway — A painting of the inaugural journey of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, by A.B. Clayton. Dates of operation 1830– Track gauge … Wikipedia