Blake Bridge over the Parrett
Bridgwater's Blake Bridge was opened in March 1958 as part of the town centre's new relief road. It immediately increased the road capacity across the River Parrett by 200%, as the new bridge was dual-carriageway while the old Town Bridge only had two traffic lanes.
The construction of the new road saw a fair amount of demolition, particularly to the east of the river. However, the bridge approaches only saw the demolition of a handful of houses on Salmon Parade and Swimming Baths on the west bank. The new bridge is constructed of reinforced concrete and carries the dual carriageway road and wide pavements. The road is currently marked out as turning lanes for the junctions on either side of the river, and despite the addition of two further road bridges, not to mention the M5 Motorway, since it opened it can still be heavily congested.
The bridge takes its name from Admiral Blake, one of Bridgwater's most famous sons, who fought for Cromwell during the Civil War, before becoming an Admiral of the Navy, turning it into the most formidable force Britain had ever had.