Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Hampton Loade

This bridge's distinctive and pleasing shape attracted my attention when I'd seen it in the distance from a train window so why not take a walk along the river to take a closer look. It is the Hampton Loade Bridge to the Water Treatment Works over the River Severn. The tubular blue archways integrated into the bridge are water pipes with a walkway underneath.. The water treatment plant and nearby Cheltmarsh Reservoir were built in the 1960s by Degremont-Laing for Severn Trent Water and it was the first design and build contract for the then national and publicly owned water industry.  (Previously capital projects employed a consultant engineer to carry out a feasibility study and then project manage the resulting contracts).  With privatisation  design and build contracts became the norm.

This stretch of the River Severn is popular with canoeists although I wasn’t quick enough with my camera to catch them going under the bridge.  We didn't inspect the bridge further as our route led us further along the banking (and as it turned out into a thunderstorm) but we did look longingly at

the landing stage across the river on the way past where we had heard the cable ferry ran although the machinery didn't look well used.
however the wiring was still in place nearby
along with the water measurement pole.  The crossing has been here for about 400 years but the floods of 2007 damaged the riverbank and I wondered how far up the pole the water reached.  The owner put the ferry up for sale after the floods and I read that the Hampton Loade villagers now operate the crossing. With the help of Wikipedia here is the ferry in operation 
"Hampton Loade Ferry - 2004-07-24" by © Optimist on the run, 2004 /. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia
and this is the explanation of its workings.  "The Hampton Loade Ferry is a reaction ferry, propelled by the river current.  An overhead cable is suspended across the river, and the ferry is tethered by a second cable, to a pulley block that runs on the suspended cable. To operate the ferry it is angled into the current, causing the current to move it across the river".

 An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet, this week sojourning at H here




5 comments:

Roger Owen Green said...

It's so...BLUE!

ROG, ABCW

Reader Wil said...

Interesting post as always. Ferries are a common sight here where I live in this wet country, with waterways everywhere. I have to take the ferry to cross the river on my way to the windmills.
Wil, ABCW.

Snapperoni :: Photography said...

There's a walkway in those tubes?
Interesting post, the ferry that goes back and forth.. We have waterways here but none like that.

Snapperoni :: Photography said...

There's a walkway in those tubes?
Interesting post, the ferry that goes back and forth.. We have waterways here but none like that.

Marie said...

Fascinating bridge and remains of the ferry!