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Gigantic bridge to be made from plastic bricks in Shropshire world record attempt

By Lisa O'Brien | Telford | News | Published:

A gigantic bridge will be at the centre of a record-breaking attempt in Shropshire.

Ironbridge Gorge Museums, together with the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), is attempting to break the Guinness World Book of Records for building a bridge with the longest span from interlocking plastic bricks.

On view from Saturday, August 31 into the autumn, the bridge will stretch the length of Enginuity at the museum’s Coalbrookdale site.

The new bridge will have a record span of around 16.8m, be 34m long and contain just under 205,000 bricks.

This will beat the existing record of a span of 16.46m, which was achieved by the Institute of Civil Engineers on September 5, 2016.

Enginuity was chosen by ICE for this world record attempt because both organisations are dedicated to inspiring engineers of the future with engineers of the past.

Jo Barnett, regional director ICE West Midlands, said: “We are delighted to work with Enginuity to showcase the new model bridge with its record span.

"Enginuity welcomes children from all over the country and the hope is that the bridge and additional activities will encourage more children to consider civil engineering as a profession.

Excited

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"Civil engineers really do shape the world and touch every part of our lives. It is truly an exciting sector to be involved in.”

The role of an engineer has changed through the centuries from the first Industrial Revolution in the Ironbridge Gorge back in the 18th century to what is now recognised as the fourth Industrial Revolution.

Rapidly emerging from the third, it is regarded as a new era, rather than a continuation, because of the explosiveness of its development fusing the physical and digital technologies, reflected in Enginuity’s fab lab and newer exhibits.

Ed Diment, from Bright Bricks, added: "We are very excited to be working with the ICE to be installing the world's longest span bridge built with plastic interlocking bricks.

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"Working with the ICE, the record was set back in 2016, but this new installation extends that length to set a new record with a central span of some 16.8m.

"We are hoping that this installation will inspire a new generation of children to take up a career in engineering when they see what is possible with toy bricks."

The bridge will then be on display at the museum throughout the Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage's two-week long Festival of Imagination, which runs between September 14 and 29.

One of the 10 Ironbridge Gorge Museums, Enginuity is open daily 10am until 4pm.

Viewing the bridge is included in the admission price of £9.50 adults, £8.50 60 plus and £6.50 children five-16, under 5s free.

Lisa O'Brien

By Lisa O'Brien
Senior Reporter - @lisaobrien_Star

Senior reporter based at Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley. Covering the Telford area.

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