Imatges de pàgina


The Erection of New London Bridge. [Aug. velocity of the reflux is in like man- which were removed by taking away ner checked, and that the water above the two piers and the waterworks, bridge never ebbs out so low, by have been hitherto compensated by nearly the quantity of the whole fall

, the works of the new bridge. It will as it will do when the dam is removed. at least be desirable to proceed with He remarks that any additional depth deliberation and by degrees in the at high water would be perfectly use- work of removal, in order that the less to the navigation ; and that an effects of the less impeded current may increased velocity would not be bene- be gradually ascertained, and be proficial; for while it added to the hazard perly obviated. Under all circumof navigation, it would also increase stances, we shall not cease to regard the difficulty now experienced by with respect the memory of the old wherries and small craft, in making structure, which has been a faithful way against the stream; that a quicker servant for so many ages, and over outfall would so far injure the naviga- which so many millions in successive tion, as it would leave the bed of the generations have crossed the bosom of river nearly dry at the ebb of spring the noble Thames. tides, and the silt from the sewers The erection of a new Bridge havwould thus have a much greater ex- ing been agitated at different periods tent of shore to deposit itself on; and, for more than twenty years, but susif the flood tide ran stronger, the up- pended during the progress of Southper parts of the river would be choked wark Bridge, the first serious step toup with mud carried up from London, wards the structure now completed, and less would be carried eastward, as took place in 1821, when a committee at present a more than ordinary rapid of the House of Commons recommendcurrent occasions a more than ordi- ed a bill for that purpose to be prenary deposition of filth. To these ill sented in the next session. Premiums effects anticipated in the river itself, were then offered for designs, viz. are added fears that the deepening 2501. for the best, 1501. for the second stream will undermine the wharfs in merit, and 1001. for the third. Afand embankments, and the founda- ter several changes in the decision, * tions of some of the other bridges, these premiums were adjudged to Mr. particularly Blackfriars, Waterloo, and William Fowler, Mr. T. Borer, and Westminster; and what is worst, Mr. Charles Aug. Busby; but one of that the low lands from Rotherhithe the designs of the late John Rennie, to Battersea, including St. George's Esq. F.R.S.T was ultimately adopted Fields, Vauxhall, and Lambeth, may on the recommendation of a committee be rendered uninhabitable or unhealthy of the House of Commons. “An Act from damps and stagnant waters. On for the rebuilding London Bridge, and the Westminster side of the river, for the improving and making suitable where the shore from Privy gardens approaches thereto," received the royal to Ranelagh gardens was anciently an assent July 4, 1823. The government island (as may be easily perceived on agreed to lend the city 150,000l. and a map of sewers), similar injury may the remaining expense was to be raisbe dreaded in the low parts; as well ed from private sources on the credit as generally on the low lands on each of the Bridge house estates. side the river as high as Kingston. The site of the new structure having

It is, however, to be hoped that been fixed to be about one hundred these gloomy forebodings may be feet westward of the old one, the first realized to a very partial extent; at pile was driven on the 15th of March, the same time that persons concerned 1824, opposite to the second arch on should be prepared to meet the diffi- the Southwark side of the old bridge ; culties. The important question will and the first coffer-dam having been now be soon decided ; and it is to be completed within fourteen months of recollected that such parts of the dam that time, the first stone was laid on

* On which a pamphlet was published by Joseph Gwilt, Esq. F.S.A. the candidate, in whose favour Messrs. Nash, Soane, and Smirke, had given their award.

+ It is worthy of remark that one of the designs engraved in the Report of 1800, furnished by Robert Mylne, Esq. the architect of Blackfriars Bridge, was for a bridge of five arches, the width of the central one being 150 feet, the same as that of the bridge now erected.

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1831.] Architecture of New London Bridge.

125 the 15th of June, 1825 (the tenth an- London ; but the architectural feature niversary of the battle of Waterloo,) last described forms a dwarf wall, by the Lord Mayor (Garratt), in the over which a grown person may look presence of the Duke of York, the

upon the river. The total height of President, and a committee of the the bridge, from low water mark, is Royal Society, and other distinguish- fifty-five feet. The width of the cared visitors, as well as all the city se- riage way is thirty-six feet, and of nators and official characters.

each footpath nine feet. Since the death of Mr. Rennie in On both sides of the bridge, at 1826, the works have been carried on each extremity, are magnificent flights under the superintendence of his son, of stairs. They are twenty-two feet now Sir John Rennie,+ and by Wil- in width, and lead straight to the waliam Joliffe, Esq. and Sir Edward ter without a turn, but are relieved by Banks, as contractors. The original two landing-places. The number of amount of the contract made by those steps is seventy-seven, about thirty of gentlemen was 426,0001., and 30,0001. which are covered at high water. At for the alterations and repairs neces- the head of each flight of stairs stand sary to the new bridge during the two colossal blocks of granite, each works. The amount was increased weighing twenty-five tons. to 506,000l. by the addition of 8000l. The exterior of the bridge is of three for additional centering, and of 42,0001. sorts of granite, wrought in the most granted by the Lords of the Treasury beautiful and scientific manner. The in 1825 for making the bridge six eastern side is faced with purple Aberfeet wider, namely, two feet in the deen granite, the western with the roadway, and two feet in each foot- light grey Devonshire Heytor, and the path.

youssoirs or arch stones of both are The outline of the surface of the united with the red brown granite of bridge, as proposed in Mr. Rennie's Peterhead. The fillings-in of the piers, original design, was a very flat seg- spandrils, roadway, &c. are of the ment of a circle, which has been ren- hard Bramby Fell (a fine indurated dered still more flat by an increase in sandstone), Derby, and Whitby stone. the height of the arches near the The materials were roughly shaped at banks, and the present ascent is not the quarries, and, after being carefully more than seven feet. The design of wrought in a large field at Mill Wall, the bridge displays five very beautiful Poplar, were finally dressed and accuelliptical arches, the two outward- rately fitted to their places at the most of which are 130 feet in span, bridge. Mr. Elmes, the architect, in and 244 feet in height; the two next a pamphlet on London Bridge,” re140 feet in span, and 274 in height; cently published (to which we and the central one 152 in span, and principally indebted for the present 29} in height,—the largest elliptical description), states that he watched stone arch in existence. The piers the fittings in of the key-stone course on each side this magnificent opening of the second arch from the London ‘are 24 feet in width; the two other si and witnessed the anxious expiers are 22 feet wide; and the abut- pression of the countenance of Sir ments are 73 feet each at the base. Edward Banks at the blows on the

The piers are plain rectangular but- head of the key-stone, which made tresses, resting on massive plinths, the whole fabric of the arch and cenand pointed cut-waters ; they are tre tremble ; but which succeeded so crowned by a bold projecting block well, that at the striking of those poncornice, which describes the sweep of derous masses of carpentry, the sinkthe roadway, and is surmounted by a ing of the arch and the consequent plain double blocking-course, reced- alteration of its curvature (a circuming in two heights, like the scamilli stance so much regretted in some of of the ancients. There are no balus- the best of the scientific Peyronnet's ters, as at the other stone bridges in bridges) is scarcely perceptible.


* See a description of the ceremony in our vol. xcv. i. 557.

† The honour of knighthood was conferred on this talented representative of a highly talented father, on the 17th of the present month.

The iron arches of Southwarki Bridge are, the side arches 210, and the central one 240 feet.

Opening of New London Bridge.

In order to conclude our description an elliptical arch, built with York-
of the bridge, we have only to notice shire stone, but fronted on each side
the handsome bronze lamp-posts which with granite ; the eleven other arches,
are fixed on the parapet walls, one as well as the twenty-two on the
supporting two lamps at each side Surrey side, will be appropriated as
over the four smaller arches, and one warehouses, cellarage, &c. Near the
with three lamps at each side over the Thames-street arch, both east and
centre arch. They have been cast west, a rustic doorway is the entrance
by Mr. Parker, of Argyll-street, out to a staircase leading to the foot of the
of captured cannon brought from his bridge.
Majesty's yard at Woolwich; their The ground on each side the new
design is elegant, and is displayed to approaches will be hereafter let on
so much the greater advantage, from building leases, under the management
the total absence of ornament in the of William Montague, esq. the Clerk

of the City Works; but the designs The provision of adequate ap- for the elevations next the street are, proaches, attended by the necessary by the provisions of the last Act of purchase of many valuable premises, Parliament, to be provided by Robert has been the source of a vast addi. Smirke, esq. R.A. one of the attached tional expenditure. To avoid the in- architects to the Board of Works. convenient declivity, which was the principal annoyance connected with On the 1st of August, the anniversary of the old bridge, the roadway is carried

the accession of the House of Hanover, the from the bridge on a series of land ceremony of opening the Bridge was hoarches, with a very gradual slope, un- noured by the presence of their Majesties. til it meets the level of the High- procession should be by water, with the

The King was pleased to command that the street, Southwark, on the Surrey side, double view of benefiting the men employed and the higher levels of Fish-street

on the river, and of enabling the greatest Hill, Great Eastcheap, and their vici- possible number of his loyal subjects to nity, on the London side.

witness the spectacle. The arrangements The roadway on the Surrey side is on the river were entrusted to Sir Byam continued up in nearly a straight line, Martin, and the Bridge and its approaches until it meets the old road near St. to the Bridge Committee. A triple awning Thomas's-street. On the eastern side was erected at the London end of the of this new road, another diverges Bridge, commencing from a magnificent northward, and by a similar inclined pavilion, and extending for the whole width plane, meets Tooley-street. Tooley of the Bridge, as far as the second piers. street is itself continued westward The pavilion and awning were covered with

the colours of all nations, and upwards under a peculiarly handsome and scientifically constructed elliptical arch

of 150 flags and banners floated from of brick, so that carriages and pas

the top of the Bridge. In the Royal tent

was erected the throne prepared for the insengers passing eastward and west

tended dinner at Guildhall in November ward go under the roadway, and those last, in front of which was a table laid for going northward and southward, to their Majesties and the members of the and from the bridge, pass and repass Royal Family, and under the canopy were without crossing the others; whilst two long tables, on each side, capable of those desiring to go eastward or west- accommodating 1500 persons, for the use ward from the bridge accomplish their of the aldermen and officers of the Corporaobject by means of the new road which tion, the Common Councilmen, and their communicates with Tooley-street.

ladies, &c., the centre being left open for The road from the bridge on the

the procession, and to afford an uninterCity side proceeds in a straight line, rupted view along the Bridge from the Royal

tahle.* The flooring used for entertainments over the site of the late church of St.

in Guildhall was laid down, and a magnificent Michael, Crooked - lane, and then

carpet spread throughout the Royal lent; branches off on each side to Fish- at each of the four corners of which a man street Hill and East Cheap. The stood in a full suit of armour, four of the road from Thames-street passes under most splendid suits having been brought

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* For the use of the accompanying cut, showing the interior arrangements of the Pavilion, we are indebted to the Editor of the Mirror, in which intelligent and wellconducted weebly Periodical it origioally appeared.

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