Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Great Old London Bridges That Are Not Falling Down, Yet.

1. Albert Bridge. Connects Chelsea and Battersea. Opened 1873. Architects: Joseph Bazalgette and Rowland Mason Ordish. Length: 216 meters. Named for Prince Albert, Queen Victoria's consort, who died in 1861. 

Ordish designed it as a cable stayed bridge, but it proved structurally unsound. To strengthen it, Bazalgette added some design elements of a suspension bridge. In 1973 the Greater London Council added two concrete piers, which transformed the central span into a simple beam bridge.

Beautiful but not designed for modern motor traffic, the Albert Bridge was (somewhat oddly) nicknamed the "Trembling Lady" because it tended to vibrate noticeably when large numbers of people crossed it. That is the reason for the notice on the toll booth below. 

As the booths indicate, the Albert Bridge originally charged tolls for crossing, but it proved unprofitable and soon passed into public ownership. It still carries some motor vehicles, with severe restrictions.,_London

2. Hammersmith Bridge. Connects Hammersmith and Fulham on the North side of the Thames to Barnes on the South side. Current bridge opened 1887, replacing another opened in 1827. Architect: Joseph Bazalgette. Suspension bridge. Length: 210 meters. 

Like the Albert Bridge, Hammersmith Bridge suffered from the advent of heavy modern vehicular traffic, which it was not designed to support. It has been closed to traffic for lengthy periods for repairs and strengthening, and now has 7.5 ton weight limit. 

3. Richmond Bridge. Connects Richmond Upon Thames and Twickenham. Opened 1777. Stone arch bridge designed by James Paine and Kenton Couse. length: 91 meters.  

It is the oldest surviving Thames bridge in London. It was widened and reinforced during the 20th century and continues to carry vehicular traffic.,_London

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