68/366 Newport Transporter Bridge
The bridge was built in 1906 and was designed by a French architect Ferdinand Arnodin. The bridge was built to allow shipping access to the businesses along the Usk and to provide vehicular and pedestrian access from one side to the other after the Lysaghts steelworks were built. It is now a Grade 1 listed structure.
The towers stand 645 feet apart and rise to 242 feet above road level It is electrically powered, the gondola is pulled across by a cable wound round a drum in the motor house on the East bank
There are currently 7 left in the world, 3 in the UK and the Newport one is only Public one. It is also the biggest and is a unique design.
It became quite run down in the 1980s and was eventually closed in 1985 as is was deemed unsafe to use due to the corrosion of the wires. It was eventually passed in to the hands of CADW and the European Architectural Heritage Fund. Funding paid for the £3millon restoration and it reopened in December 1995.
If you are visiting Newport or are in the area it is well worth a visit. You’ll never see anything like it anywhere else. It’s a fantastic piece of engineering genius and is my favourite Newport architecture. I still think it’s a miracle that it was never sold off (there was several offers from the USA and Canada) and I’m so proud that Newport still has this historic icon and I hope that it will remain here for many years to come.
If you would like to read more about the Newport Transporter Bridge please click here
The pictures below are:
1 – Wide shot of the bridge (69/366 #Project366)
2- East side approach
3 – The Gondola
4 – The steps – you used to be able to pay 5p to climb all the way to the top and walk across the top. Since it was reopened only authorised staff have access.
5 – The wheel house