Harrington Bridge from the Leicestershire river bank showing the river running much higher than normal
|Heritage status||Grade II listed structure|
Harrington Bridge crosses the River Trent near Sawley in Derbyshire carrying the Tamworth Road (B6540) into Leicestershire. The stonework of the bridge dates from 1790, but the central section was replaced in 1905 after it was damaged by flood water. The central section is the only part of the bridge that is not a listed building.
Crossings at this point date at least from the fourteenth century when several timber bridges were built. Although one lasted eighty years they were all washed away and in 1321 a ferry at Sawley was initiated.
The existing bridge dates from 1789 to 1790 and was designed by the bridge engineer and architect, Thomas Harrison of Lancaster. The new bridge was a toll bridge and everyone except locals living in Sawley or Hemington (in Leicestershire) were required to pay the toll. The Lord of the Manor and his servants were also specifically excluded from toll charges. In 1792, a ford to the west of the bridge became impassable as a result of a weir built at Redhill in Nottinghamshire which must have increased the income from tolls. The Lord of the Manor from 1779 was Charles Stanhope, 3rd Earl of Harrington.
Harrington Bridge consisted of six arches of stone, which, with the approaches, were about 100 yards (91 m) yards long, and 15 feet (5 m) feet wide, with a toll house. The first bridge was washed down by the great flood before it was completed, previous to which here was a ford. The bridge was erected by shareholders, at a cost of around £4,000 (£410,000 as of 2013), and tolls were levied to those crossing the bridge until 1882.
The bridge was damaged in floods during 1904. In 1906 a two-span riveted steel girder bridge was erected replacing the central section, retaining the original stone approach arches. The remaining parts of the original bridge are Grade II listed buildings.
It now carries Tamworth Road, the B6540, (formerly the A453) over the river providing a link between Leicestershire and Derbyshire.
|Next road crossing upstream||River Trent||Next road crossing downstream|
|M1 motorway||Harrington Bridge
Grid reference: SK471311
|Clifton Bridge (Nottingham) A453 road|
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- Sawley Historical Society, accessed January 2010
- A biographical dictionary of civil engineers in Great Britain and Ireland. A. W. Skempton
- The Long Eaton and Sawley Archive, accessed January 2010
- An Act for building a Bridge over the River Trent at or near Sawley Ferry in the Counties of Derby and Leicester. George III, CAP. 80
- Directory of Derbyshire. 1857. White.
- UK CPI inflation numbers based on data available from Lawrence H. Officer (2010) "What Were the UK Earnings and Prices Then?" MeasuringWorth.
- Images of England: North section of Harrington Bridge, English Heritage, retrieved 7 January 2010
- Images of England: Section of Harrington Bridge, English Heritage, retrieved 7 January 2010
- Inland Waterways Association, Aegre Region Newsletter, July 2006
- Inland Waterways Association, Aegre Region Newsletter, November 2006