Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,518 pages of information and 233,949 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Over Bridge, Gloucester

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JD Over Bridge01.jpg
JD Over Bridge02.jpg
The eastern abutment, showing that the right hand portion was evidently sinking during construction

at Over, Gloucester

The lowest crossing of the river Severn before the Severn Crossings, this masonry bridge was built by Thomas Telford in 1828.

150 ft span, with 35 ft rise, although the tapered haunches give the impression of a flatter arch, while also aiding the flow of water during floods.

There is a noticeable dip at mid-span. The centre of the arch dropped 3" on removal of the wooden centring, and a further 7" due to displacement of the eastern abutment, which, due to false economy, had inadequate foundations. The western abutment was on firmer ground.

The design was based on a much earlier bridge at Neuilly on the Seine, designed by Jean-Rodolphe Perronet.

An interesting account of the bridge is available here [1]

The spandrels are not solid, there being five cells across the width of the bridge, 2 ft 6" wide, as can be seen in a drawing in the above link.

The bridge has been bypassed, but is accessible on foot. Access from the fast and busy A48 needs to be well researched before attempting to reach the footpaths!


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. Telford’s bridge over the Severn at Over, Gloucester', by Bill Harvey, 2011