Clifton Suspension Bridge

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Clifton Suspension Bridge

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaJump to navigationJump to searchFor the bridge in New Zealand, see Clifden Suspension Bridge.

Clifton Suspension Bridge
Clifton Suspension Bridge
Coordinates51°27′18″N 2°37′40″WCoordinates51°27′18″N 2°37′40″W
CarriesB3129 road, cars, pedestrians and cyclists
CrossesRiver Avon
Maintained byClifton Suspension Bridge Trust
DesignSuspension bridge
Total length1,352 ft (412 m)
Width31 ft (9.4 m)
Height331 ft (101 m) above high water level (86 ft (26 m) above deck)
Longest span702 ft 3 in (214.05 m)
Clearance below245 ft (75 m) above high water level
Daily traffic8,800[1]
TollVehicles £1.00
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Shown within Bristol and the UK

The Clifton Suspension Bridge is a suspension bridge spanning the Avon Gorge and the River Avon, linking Clifton in Bristol to Leigh Woods in North Somerset. Since opening in 1864, it has been a toll bridge, the income from which provides funds for its maintenance. The bridge is built to a design by William Henry Barlow and John Hawkshaw,[2] based on an earlier design by Isambard Kingdom Brunel. It is a grade I listed building and forms part of the B3129 road.

The idea of building a bridge across the Avon Gorge originated in 1753. Original plans were for a stone bridge and later iterations were for a wrought iron structure. In 1831, an attempt to build Brunel’s design was halted by the Bristol riots, and the revised version of his designs was built after his death and completed in 1864. Although similar in size, the bridge towers are not identical in design, the Clifton tower having side cut-outs, the Leigh tower more pointed arches atop a 110-foot (34 m) red sandstone-clad abutment. Roller-mounted “saddles” at the top of each tower allow movement of the three independent wrought iron chains on each side when loads pass over the bridge. The bridge deck is suspended by 162 vertical wrought-iron rods in 81 matching pairs.[…]