The partial collapse of the 300 year old Tadcaster Bridge over the River Wharfe is disaster for the town. It’s a much loved historic attraction, and its closure will entail lengthy diversions for residents. The Yorkshire Post has a video of the bridge collapse and plenty of photos. Here are photos of before and after the flood damage. Picture credits to Mtaylor848 for partially collapsed bridge and Dr Ivan Hall for the other photo.
I love ancient and historic bridges – in the UK naturally. I’ve a small library of book on ancient bridges – not sure my wife see’s as small. One of the books is The Ancient Bridges of the North of England by E Jervoise, 1931 Architectural Press. It contains the following description of the bridge.
The last bridge across the Wharfe before it joins the River Ouse is Tadcaster Bridge. The important crossing was mentioned in the Patent Rolls, and five separate grants of pontage were issued between 1346 and 1400, and several early sixteenth century wills contain bequests for the maintenance of the bridge. Leland recorded that ‘the Bridge at Tadcaster over Wharfe hath 8 faire arches of stone,’ but John Wharburton, c. 1720, gives the number as nine. Thomas Allen, in 1823, also recorded that the bridge has nine arches and that it was ‘erected at the beginning of the eighteenth century from ruins of the castle.’
Only seven arches are now visible and the bridge has been widened by about 15 feet and is now 28 feet between parapets.
The Daily Mail has extensive coverage of the bridge collapse a government minister making the bridge repair a ‘national priority’.