News:
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Author Topic: Rochester Bridge  (Read 42608 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline DaveTheTrain

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 311
  • Appreciation 18
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #72 on: August 10, 2015, 21:24:07 »
I have been looking at this picture for a while now and it does not strike me as quite right.  If you zoom in on the pedestrian with push chair that looks distinctly later than the  age of the photo... or is it just me?
http://www.kenthistoryforum.co.uk/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=8575.0;attach=16359;image

Offline mikeb

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 522
  • Appreciation 27
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #71 on: August 10, 2015, 18:31:00 »
I am sure I have read somewhere, but for the life of me cannot now find it, that the "swing or draw" opening section was required by the Admiralty. Also it was very seldom used because the vast majority of trade above the bridge was conducted by sailing barge and they preferred to "shoot" the bridge thereby avoiding paying the fee for having the bridge opened. The fee for a "shuffler" to assist in lowering the barge's gear was cheaper than having the bridge opened, and quicker!

Meanwhile I will continue to search for my source.............

Offline peterchall

  • Established Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3620
  • Appreciation 186
  • 25.06.1929 - 12.03.2016
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #70 on: August 10, 2015, 17:54:23 »
Looking at Smiffy’s plan (Reply#76) the road bridge would swing anti-clockwise about its bridge end, and the radius of its end clearly would allow this. About half its length is over the pivot and about half is ‘overhang’. It would end up pointing upstream.

The rail bridge would be similar, but pivoted about its shore end, swinging anti-clockwise to end up facing downstream, although the radius does not seem to ‘fit’ as well as for the road bridge.

The overhangs are less in proportion to the total length than they first appear, so perhaps it’s not so much ‘silly me’ after all. But terminology arises again – I wouldn’t call them ‘Draw Bridges’. And it contradicts Merc's book at Reply#72! But that answers my question - the winding gear is NOT still there!
It's no use getting old if you don't get artful

merc

  • Guest
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #69 on: August 10, 2015, 17:15:31 »
The swing-bridges 'turn' rather than lift.

"The clear passage for ships is 50 feet, and the bridge spans the whole space, turning on a ring of iron 30 feet diameter"

Offline peterchall

  • Established Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3620
  • Appreciation 186
  • 25.06.1929 - 12.03.2016
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #68 on: August 10, 2015, 08:10:58 »
There is a chamber below the Strood end of the bridge, where it abuts the opening section, clearly shown in the link at Reply#60:

http://www.kenthistoryforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=8575.msg123839#msg123839

That probably housed the manually operated mechanism for raising the opening section, with its balance weight. So it seems that it was pivoted at the bridge end.

But the plan of both opening sections, three posts above, suggests the railway bridge was pivoted at the shore end and, remarkably, was not aligned with the road section. It looks as if the effective opening was only about half the length of each lifting span, although probably still adequate for the size of boats using it.

I wonder what that chamber is used for now – could the lifting mechanism still be there?
It's no use getting old if you don't get artful

merc

  • Guest
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #67 on: August 09, 2015, 18:57:16 »
I think the IWM photo's several posts back were mislabled. The photo's were probably taken by the Royal Engineers, but I don't think the Royal Engineers themselves had anything to do with the construction of the 1856 (road) bridge, just the demolition of the old bridge...

Article from the Illustrated London News - August 30, 1856:

Rochester New Bridge - (To the editor of the London Illustrated News.)
My attention has this day been drawn to your report of the opening of the new bridge at Rochester, in which it is stated that "the engineer selected for the erection of the structure was Sir William Cubitt ; and the contractors, Messrs. Fox and Henderson." In justice to all parties concerned, I beg leave to supply an omission which, doubtless accidentally, occurs in this statement. Messrs. Fox and Henderson's contract comprised the foundations and piers up to the springing of the arches : and my firm contracted for the whole of the superstructure, including the swing-bridge. The masonry was executed by for us by Messrs. Lucas Brothers to our entire satisfaction, and fully sustain their high reputation for good work. I am, Sir, your obedient servant, A. B. Cochrane.- Inverness, Aug 21,1856


Offline ChrisExiledFromStrood

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 180
  • Appreciation 6
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #66 on: August 09, 2015, 15:19:54 »
Be aware that "drawbridge" on old plans doesn't necessarily mean "lifts at one end", like everyone's idea of a castle drawbridge. It could just mean that it could be "drawn back" so to speak.

Offline smiffy

  • Established Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 930
  • Appreciation 60
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #65 on: August 07, 2015, 16:25:42 »
Sentinel is correct. The 1865 OS shows a drawbridge on both road and railway. I doubt that the later Railway bridge had one, though.



Offline Sentinel S4

  • Established Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1932
  • Appreciation 165
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #64 on: August 07, 2015, 16:20:19 »
I believe there was a moveable section in both railway bridges.

S4.
A day without learning something is a day lost and my brain is hungry. Feed me please.

Offline peterchall

  • Established Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3620
  • Appreciation 186
  • 25.06.1929 - 12.03.2016
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #63 on: August 07, 2015, 15:46:24 »
Oops – I’m not very bright lately. It’s obvious that a swing bridge can’t pivot at one end! Terminology again – I would have called it a lifting bridge. Thanks Merc.

And thanks S4. I don’t imagine the LCDR bridge had a lifting section, so the lifting section of the road bridge would have been usable for only 4 years. Presumably it was to allow for the passage of boats whose masts couldn't be lowered.

I have vague memories of seeing bundles of straw hanging under the lifting section. Any ideas?
It's no use getting old if you don't get artful

Offline Sentinel S4

  • Established Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1932
  • Appreciation 165
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #62 on: August 07, 2015, 13:53:35 »
The London, Chatham and Dover Railway threw a bridge across in 1860.

S4.
A day without learning something is a day lost and my brain is hungry. Feed me please.

merc

  • Guest
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #61 on: August 07, 2015, 13:34:32 »
In my Rochester Bridge Trust book it sayes "at the Strood end of the Victorian bridge was a swing bridge, that was so delicately balanced that even though the total weight was 300 tonnes, two men could rotate it with ease 90 degrees upwards in just five minutes..."

However, as far as I know the swing bridge wasn't used and the winding gear was removed in the 1890's.


Offline peterchall

  • Established Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3620
  • Appreciation 186
  • 25.06.1929 - 12.03.2016
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #60 on: August 07, 2015, 13:13:42 »
It’s interesting that the bridge was built by Royal  Engineers and not a civilian contractor.

Does anyone know how the swing section was powered? Presumably tn was pivted at the Strood end and swung to the north.

So far as I can determine the first railway bridge was built in 1892, which means that:
1)   The railway bridge was far enough to the north to allow the road bridge to open, and also had a swing section, or
2)   The swing facility was no longer in use.
It's no use getting old if you don't get artful

Offline HERB COLLECTOR

  • Established Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1400
  • Appreciation 218
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #59 on: August 06, 2015, 22:23:31 »
The Victorian cast iron Rochester Bridge was designed by Sir William Cubbitt, the bridge had three arches and a swing section at the Strood end.
The bridge was officially declared open on the 13th August 1856.

photos dated 1856.
© IWM (Q 69860) Royal Engineers constructing the bridge. In the foreground is the cast iron roller path, 30 feet in diameter, for the swing portion of the bridge.
© IWM (Q 69810) Royal Engineers constructing the bridge at Rochester.
 

Offline Rochester-bred

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 611
  • Appreciation 42
Re: Rochester Bridge
« Reply #58 on: January 26, 2015, 09:10:56 »
Would someone be able to post a recent picture of the bridge and mark where the old bridge that was demolished was please? Thank you.
***I am still the child within***

 

BloQcs design by Bloc
SMF 2.0.11 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines