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Castlefield 1849 Viaduct, MSJ&AR Altrincham Line
Bridgewater Canal, Castlefield Basin, Manchester, UK
Castlefield 1849 Viaduct, MSJ&AR Altrincham Line
associated engineer
David Bellhouse
date  1848 - 1849
era  Victorian  |  category  Railway Viaduct  |  reference  SJ830975
photo  Paul Dunkerley
The Manchester South Junction & Altrincham Railway built two of the four large railway viaducts from the 1800s that cross the Castlefield canal basin: this one carried double tracks southwest towards Altrincham and is the most southerly of four.
The MSJ&A Railway was Manchester's first suburban line. It ran from Manchester Piccadilly via Oxford Road and Deansgate, with a branch line to Altrincham. All four viaducts in the basin intersect at a point about 300m west of Deansgate Station.
Bellhouse was a local man whose family businesses included a timber yard, a cotton mill and an iron works. His arched viaduct runs close to the site of the both the mill and the timber yard. To build it, he used more than 50 million bricks. He was also responsible for laying the railway track.
The viaduct includes a cast iron bridge over the Bridgewater Canal wharves designed by William Baker and William Cubitt, and another Baker cast iron arch over Egerton Street (rebuilt in steel in 1976), both of which are the subject of separate entries on this website.
Contractor: David Bellhouse
Research: PD
PHEW records, ICE
"David Bellhouse & Sons, Manchester"
by D.R. Bellhouse
published by D.R. Bellhouse
"The Manchester South Junction & Altrincham Railway"
by Frank Dixon, 2nd Edition, The Oakwood Press, Oxford, 1994

Castlefield 1849 Viaduct, MSJ&AR Altrincham Line