Mr. T. Telford's, Design for the Suspension Bridge across the River Avon, From St. Vincent's Rocks to Leigh Down. [Principal dimensions below image.]
Pubd. by Wright & Bagnall Bristol [n.d., c.1830].
Lithograph, sheet 225 x 285mm. Foxing outside image.
Thomas Telford (1757 - 1834) was born in Westerkirk, Scotland. He was a stonemason, architect and civil engineer and a noted road, bridge and canal builder. This is a representation of his design, never realised, for the Clifton Suspension Bridge. The idea of building a bridge across the Avon Gorge originated in 1753, with a bequest in the will of Bristolian merchant William Vick, who left £1,000 invested with instructions that when the interest had accumulated to £10,000, it should be used for the purpose of building a stone bridge between Clifton Down (which was outside the City of Bristol until the 1830s) and Leigh Woods (then in Somerset). By 1829, Vick's bequest had reached £8,000, but it was estimated that a stone bridge would cost over ten times that amount. An Act of Parliament was passed to allow a wrought-iron suspension bridge to be built instead, and tolls levied to recoup the cost. A competition was held to find a design for the bridge; the judge, Telford, rejected all designs, and tried to insist on this design of his own, a suspension bridge supported on tall Gothic towers. Telford claimed that no suspension bridge could exceed the 600 feet (183 m) span of his own Menai Suspension Bridge. A second competition, held with new judges, was won by Isambard Kingdom Brunel's design on 16 March 1831, for a suspension bridge with fashionably Egyptian-influenced towers.
[Ref: 7517] £160.00