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Technical paper: Remedial works for the Iron Bridge

J A Williams, FICE, FIStructE, Sandford Fawcett, Wilton and Bell. This paper was first published in GE’s May 1974.


The bridge which still spans the Severn Gorge in Coalbrookdale, at the township of Ironbridge, was the first cast-iron bridge ever to be built in the world. It is now almost 200 years since the structure was first opened to traffic and it remains in full use today, although for the past 40 years it has served as a footbridge only.

The purpose of this article is to describe certain remedial works currently being undertaken with the object of preserving this ancient and historic bridge, with special reference to the foundation problems encountered. Before so doing it may be of interest to describe briefly the history of the bridge, this serving as a background to the scene of the operations now in progress 

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