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Sheath Lane (Oxshott) Footbridge
Oxshott, Leatherhead, Surrey
associated engineer
J.W. Jacomb-Hood
LG Mouchel & Partners
date  1908 - opened January 1910
UK era  Modern  |  category  Bridge  |  reference  TQ137607
ICE reference number  HEW 1455
Still in good condition, the footbridge over the tracks at the end of Sheath Lane in Oxshott dates from 1910, making it pretty well 100 years old — a venerable age for a "ferro-concrete" bridge. In fact this is the oldest surviving reinforced concrete footbridge over a railway in the UK.
The bridge was constructed using the Hennebique system of reinforcement design — L.G.Mouchel & Partners' founding father, Louis Gustave Mouchel, had been the agent in the UK for this French system. The bridge's design was guided by J.W. Jacomb-Hood, Chief Engineer for the London & South-Western Railway, for whom it was constructed.
The footbridge has a clear span of 14m and provides a footway 1.4m wide. The two sets of access stairs sit at 90 degrees to the bridge axis. Stirrups have been used to help bind the structure together. The cranked span clears the tracks by some 4m.
Solid 152mm-thick parapets, pannelled to 100mm thick, form the main girders. These sit on transverse beams, 127mm wide by 178mm high, which also support the 76mm-thick reinforced concrete deck. The surface of the deck is finshed with granite paving.
The structure is supported at its stair landings on two groups of four columns, each column being 305mm square in section. These sit on reinforced concrete slabs, 203mm thick and measuring 2.36m by 2.29m in plan.
The solid appearance of the structure is characteristic of early reinforced concrete bridges, as is the idea of having the main girders anchored into adjoining members — an interesting comparison can be made with the bridge connecting the platforms at Kew Station.
Design engineer: J.W. Jacomb-Hood (Chief Engineer, L&SW Railway)
Supervising engineer: A.W. Szlumper
For Mouchel: T.J. Gueritte
Contractor: James Carmichael, London (authorised Hennebique contractor)
Research: FBA
"The Development of Concrete Bridges in the British Isles prior to 1940"
by M.M. Chrimes, in "Historic Concrete: Background to Appraisal" ed. Sutherland, Humm and Chrimes, Thomas Telford Ltd, London, 2001
"Mouchel: A Century of Achievement" published by Mouchel, 1997
"Railway Over-bridge, Oxshott (L&SWR)" in Ferro-concrete, 1909 (1), pp 99-101
reference sources   CEH South

Sheath Lane (Oxshott) Footbridge