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Tamar Bridge

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Tamar Bridge
Location Map ( geo)
Tamar Bridge.jpg
Cameraicon.png View gallery (10)
From:  Plymouth, Devon
To:  Saltash, Cornwall
Cornwall • Devon
Highway Authority
National Highways
Opening Date
free (motorcycles), £2.00 (less that 3.5t MGW), £4.90 (2 axle vehicles over 3.5t MGW). Vehicles with trailers are charged more (correct as of 18/11/19)
Additional Information
Bridge Type:  Suspension Bridge
Length:  642m (2106 ft 4 in)
Max Span:  335m (1099 ft 1 in)
On road(s)
A38 • A374

The Tamar Bridge on the A38 forms the major of two crossings of the River Tamar between Plymouth and Cornwall (the other being the Torpoint Ferry on the A374).


The suspension bridge was built to carry a three-lane tidal flow road (reversible middle lane) and opened in 1961 with toll booths located on the Plymouth side. In 1999-2001 it was widened by the addition of two cantilevered lanes, one on each side of the existing deck – the first suspension bridge in the world to be widened by such a method.

The present five lanes (counting from north to south) carry:

  • eastbound local traffic from Saltash
  • eastbound through traffic from Cornwall
  • east or westbound through traffic (tidal flow)
  • westbound traffic to Saltash and Cornwall
  • a footpath and cycleway.

Tolls are collected for all vehicles when travelling Cornwall to Devon only; pedestrians and cyclists are free.

The opening

The bridge was opened on 24 October 1961. There was still work to be completed so its ceremonial opening was delayed. The initial toll was 3 shillings single or 4s 6d return.

The Saltash Ferry completed its last fare paying journey at 23.15 on the previous day and a final ceremonial journey on the day.

Construction details

It has an 1,100 foot span, is 110 feet above the river, and was built to only allow a sway of 3 inches in a 100 m.p.h. gale. Contractor was Cleveland Bridge and Engineering Co. Ltd., cost £1.75 million in 1961.

The route

The bridge and approaches shown under construction on the June 1961 map


Tamar Bridge
Related Pictures
View gallery (10)
Tamar Bridge toll booths and canopy - Geograph - 206735.jpgA38 Tamar Bridge Toll Plazza - Coppermine - 18057.jpgTamar 2 008.JPGTamar Bridge looking east.jpgTamar Bridges 1.jpg
Crossings of The Hamoaze, Tamar and other Tributaries
The HamoazeTorpoint Ferry
River TamarNether Bridge • Polson Bridge • Dunheved Bridge • Greystone Bridge • Gunnislake New Bridge • Tamar Bridge
River TavyTavy Bridge • Tavistock Bridge
River PlymLaira Bridge

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