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Hammersmith Suspension Bridge, site of
River Thames, Hammersmith, London, UK
Hammersmith Suspension Bridge, site of
associated engineer
William Tierney Clark
date  1825 - 6th October 1827
era  Georgian  |  category  Bridge  |  reference  TQ229781
ICE reference number  HEW 2248
photo  London Metropolitan Archives
The original bridge at Hammersmith was a suspension bridge designed by William Tierney Clark, who lived in the area and was Engineer to the West Middlesex Water Works Company. This was the first suspension bridge over the Thames.
To mark the start of the project, the design of which was approved by Thomas Telford, the Duke of Sussex fixed a brass plate to one of the foundation cofferdams. Clark estimated the cost of the bridge to be around 50,000.
The bridge was supported by two masonry river piers, founded on timber piles, with a clear waterway between them of 122m.
Above the piers there were two towers with Tuscan-style arched entrances. Eight chains of wrought iron links hung from the towers, supporting the timber deck. The chain links had a cross section of 127mm by 25mm. The carriageway was 6.1m wide with two 1.5m wide pavements, although narrower under the arches.
Strength tests on the chains in 1869 proved satisfactory. Heavier traffic loading meant that a temporary bridge was put in place in 1884. The Clark's suspension bridge was reconstructed by Sir Joseph Bazalgette. He used Clark's river piers, which can be seen in the structure we continue to use today, behind the added engaged columns of Bazalgette's design.
Ironwork: Gospel Oak Ironworks, Birmingham
Stonework: G.W. & S. Bird, Hammersmith
Decking/fencing: E.J. Lance, Lewisham
Research: ECPK, JJ
bibliography
www.fandmpublications.co.uk
www.lotag.com
reference sources   CEH LondBDCE1
Location

Hammersmith Suspension Bridge, site of