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Railway Structures
Cast Iron Overbridges

Many cast iron overbridges were rebuilt as road traffic increased in weight and volume. Those that remain are mostly on lightly-trafficked lanes, or only carry pedestrians. They normally have a weight restriction, and the width of vehicles that can cross them may be limited, in an effort to prevent use by heavy vehicles.
Bridge 112, Longfield Bridge 112, Longfield, photographed on 3oth September 2007.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

 
Bridge 112, Longfield.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

Bridge 112, Longfield

Bridge number 112 carries Hartley Bottom Road over the railway between Longfield and Meopham. It has cast iron beams, but is otherwise of brick. Steel bracing has been added between the beams. Steel posts in the road enforce a width restriction.

Domneva Road bridge, Westgate-on-Sea Domneva Road bridge, Westgate-on-Sea, photographed on 18th August 2007.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

Domneva Road bridge at Westgate-on-Sea is another bridge with cast iron beams. Bracing has been added rather more neatly than at Hartley Bottom Road. There is also a width restriction in the road.

Mitcham Road bridge, Tooting, photographed on 21st February 2009.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

Mitcham Road bridge, Tooting

Mitcham Road bridge, Tooting retains its outer cast iron beam and a cast iron parapet. Both feature decorative panelling. The bridge has been strengthened so that it can carry heavy traffic.

Bridge 14, Ashurst New Forest Bridge 14, Ashurst New Forest, photographed on 10th November 2007.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

 
Bridge 14, Ashurst New Forest.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

Bridge 14, Ashurst New Forest

Bridge 14, south of Ashurst (New Forest), carries a forest track and has six cast iron beams. The beams were cast in Southampton in 1848, but the ornate parapet screens were replaced as recently as 1991 by the Works Maintenance Engineer, Eastleigh. These have timber frames and decorative cast iron grilles.

Church Road bridge, Richmond Church Road bridge, Richmond, photographed on 7th July 2007.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

 
Church Road bridge, Richmond.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

Church Road bridge, Richmond

This bridge carries Church Road over the Windsor line at Richmond station. There are two spans, supported on brick piers. That south of the main line crossed sidings that are no longer there. The beams are in the form of a very shallow arch, in order to reduce stress in the lower edge. Brick jack arches span between the beams and the parapet is also cast iron. The outer beam is lettered JOSEPH BUTLER & CO STANNINGLEY IRONWORKS NR LEEDS 1858. The adjacent spans over the branch from South Acton were built later and have wrought iron plate girders supporting brick parapets. The contrast between the two types of construction is clearly demonstrated here.

There are two similar cast iron beam bridges on the Tunbridge Wells to Eridge line. Both have brick jack arches between the beams. This is Station Road bridge, which spans the Spa Valley Railway at Groombridge station.

Station Road bridge, Groombridge Station Road bridge, Groombridge, photographed on 23rd April 2011.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

 
Additional steel supports have been provided to the bridge deck, but there is still a weight restriction of 9 tonnes, though buses up to 10½ tonnes are allowed.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

Station Road bridge, Groombridge
 
Montacute Road bridge, Tunbridge Wells Montacute Road bridge, Tunbridge Wells has had one of its brick parapets replaced by a concrete beam and steel railing. However, it has not been strengthened at all, resulting in a weight restriction of only 3 tonnes, photographed on 23rd April 2011.

photograph by Gregory Beecroft

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This page was last updated 31 May 2011

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