Clifton Suspension Bridge to Undergo Major Refurbishment Project to Preserve Historic Ironwork

The famous Clifton Suspension Bridge, a Grade 1 listed structure, is set to undergo a major programme of refurbishment and maintenance starting in April of 2024. The project, which aims to preserve and protect the historic wrought iron chains of the bridge, is a landmark endeavor in the ongoing conservation efforts for the iconic bridge.

According to the Clifton Suspension Bridge Trust, a large number of the bridge’s chain links are 180 years old and were originally manufactured for Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s Hungerford Footbridge in London. When the footbridge was demolished in 1845 to make way for the Charing Cross Railway Bridge, engineer John Hawkshaw recycled the parts to complete Bristol’s beloved icon.

The extensive, multi-million pound refurbishment contract for the bridge has been awarded to engineering firm Taziker. The company has been tasked with using a protective paint system to cover the chains, as well as the parapet girder latticework and stanchions that run along the outer side of the bridge’s footways. This will help to keep the ironwork in top condition for another 20-25 years.

In addition to the refurbishment work, the Trust has also announced plans to install a cutting-edge, environmentally friendly, and sustainable lighting system for the bridge. This decision follows an extensive consultation and planning process.

Trish Johnson, Bridgemaster for the Clifton Suspension Bridge Trust, expressed her excitement for the project, stating, “This is a once-in-a-lifetime project that will safeguard important original features designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, as well as updating the bridge’s illuminations to ensure we are reaching the highest standards for sustainability while minimizing light pollution.”

The project is entirely funded through the collection of bridge tolls, with the Trust thanking bridge users for their contributions to the important conservation efforts. Regular updates about the project will be shared on the Trust’s website and social media platforms.

Neil Harrison, CEO of Taziker, also commented on the project, saying, “We are delighted to be awarded such a prestigious project which will see this outstanding heritage structure continue to be enjoyed by future generations to come. It is a true testament of our reputation as conservation specialists to be trusted with a landmark that means so much to the public.”

Those interested in learning more about the project can visit the Trust’s website at https://cliftonbridge.org.uk/refurbishment-works. The project is distributed by https://pressat.co.uk/.

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