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24 September 2014

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Bridges over the Tyne
Some of the bridges over the Tyne
Some of the Tyne's many crossing points
The bridges over the River Tyne are a familiar landmark to many people in Newcastle and Gateshead. Take a closer look at some of these beautifully engineered crossings.
Gateshead City Council
Newcastle City Council
Newcastle Gateshead Quayside

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The first bridges were built by the Romans. Pons Elii in Newcastle, the Stone Bridge at Corbridge and a bridge close to Chesters fort near Chollerford.

There are 22 main bridges that span the River Tyne, the newest of which is the Gateshead Millennium Bridge.

Corbridge Bridge

The first medieval bridge built in 1235 replacing the Ford & Ferry but became ruinous and a danger in the 17th Century owing to frequent floods.

The present seven arched bridge was completed in 1674 and is the sole bridge from source mouth of the Tyne to remain standing after the severe floods of 1771.

Originally built for pack-horse and coach traffic, it was widened in 1881.

High Level Bridge
High level Bridge

This bridge was opened to traffic in August 1849. Queen Victoria crossed it a month later, 28th September 1849.

The bridge has a two-deck structure upper for Rail and the lower a roadway. The bridge is made up of six spans of 125-ft.

Hydraulic Swing Bridge
swing bridge

This bridge was completed and opened for road traffic without any ceremony on the 15th June 1876.

The swinging portion was first used on the 17th July 1876 when the "Europa" of the Italian Navy, passed up to the Elswick Ordnance Works to take on board a gun weighing 100 tons for the Italian Government.

The cost of the bridge was £240,432 1s 7d.


Tyne Bridge
Tyne Bridge

HM King George V accompanied by H.M Queen Mary on 10th October 1928 opened the Tyne Bridge.

Mott, Hay and Anderson designed the bridge and the contractors were Dorman Long & Co., Ltd of Middlesborough.

The main span is 531ft, it has a clear headway over the river of 84ft, 2ft higher than the High Level Bridge.

The Tyne Bridge cost £700,000 to build but recently it has just finished a makeover costing £1.8 million.

The granite-faced towers were intended to be used as warehouses consisting of 5 floors but the floors were never completed.

Tyne Pedestrian & Cycle Tunnel
Tyne pedestrian  and cycle tunnel

The idea of these tunnels was to bring together North and South Tyneside with a pedestrian and cycle tunnel to run under the river.

It connects the communities of Jarrow and Howdon
and is 900ft long.

Work on the tunnel was about to start in 1939 but the Second World War put a stop to it and work finally began in 1947.

Whilst digging the tunnel they had to deal with the old Jarrow and Howdon colliey mine workings which crossed their path.

The entrance of the north tunnel is now built on top of the house that Robert Stephenson was born in.


Gateshead Millennium Bridge
millennium bridge

The £22million bridge was designed by Wilkinson Eyre Architects and engineers Gifford and Partners. Work first started on the bridge in May 1999.

The Gateshead Millennium Bridge is the first opening bridge to be built across the River Tyne for more than 100 years. It has become a link between Newcastle and Gateshead just west of the Baltic Flour Mill.

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