|Location Map ( geo)|
|New Bridge from the River Avon|
|Bath and North East Somerset|
|Crossings related to the A4|
The New Bridge in Bath is actually one of the city's older bridges, dating back as far as 1735. It is believed that the original bridge was built as a belated part of Ralph Allen's River Avon Navigation project which was largely done in 1727. As owner of the local Stone Quarries, it is also believed that he commisioned, built and paid for the bridge.
The original structure consisted of three arches, although for some reason it was rebuilt towards the end of the century with just a single span. It was later widened in the early 1830s by the Bath Turnpike Trust, but no further major works appear to have been done since. This means that it remains a narrow S2 carriageway, often blocked with traffic queueing for the traffic lights at the A36 junction.
The bridge has a pair of oculus through the spandrels, both to reduce the masonry content of the structure and also to provide additional capacity for flood waters. On the south bank of the Avon, the road is carried on a stone causeway with a series of small flood arches below as it crosses the riverside meadows.