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Dozens turn out to find out more about Iron Bridge restoration

By Sophie Madden | Ironbridge | News | Published:

More than 50 people attended a drop-in event to find out more about plans to repair the iconic Iron Bridge.

The Iron Bridge

Ahead of work to repair the World's first Iron Bridge, English Heritage, its owners, held a drop in session at Number Nine, along the Wharfage.

At the event, interested residents were able to to see English Heritage’s major conservation programme in more detail.

The exhibition used visuals, videos and technical drawings of different elements of the bridge and a detailed presentation on how the bridge, ,completed in 1779, will be carefully repaired and restored.

Earlier this month, it was revealed that a £1.2m renovation project on the bridge will begin in September.

The Iron Bridge has been in the care of English Heritage since 1975 and the charity has undertaken regular conservation and monitoring during that time.

Now, a major conservation project will see the different elements of the bridge – the iron radials and braces holding the bridge together, the deck plates and wedges, the main iron arch, and the stone abutments on either side of the River Severn – undergo thorough examination and conservation.

The cast iron pieces will be carefully cleaned and conserved, and the bridge will also be re-painted.

The first stage of works will involve scaffolding being erected around the bridge.

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At the event several members of the team from English Heritage were on hand to answer any questions from the public

Also present were workers from Severn Trent as well as representatives from Taziker Industrial Ltd who have been appointed as lead contractor to undertake the conservation project.

There was also the opportunity to sign up to volunteer opportunities.

Cllr Nicola Lowery, Telford & Wrekin Council ward member for the Ironbridge Gorge said: “It was brilliant to see so many people attending the event.

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"The conservation of Iron Bridge follows three years of surveys and investigations and myself and local stakeholders have reiterated the importance of engaging with the local community to ensure an involvement and insight into this fascinating conservation process.

"The Iron Bridge is an iconic symbol of the Industrial Revolution and one of the most important sites in English Heritage’s care.

"This conservation project will ensure that both its revolutionary structure and the historical legacy that once saw the Gorge as an industrial powerhouse is preserved, to ensure it continues to inspire both the local community and visitors for generations to come."

Sophie Madden

By Sophie Madden
@SMadden_Star

Senior reporter based out of the head office in Ketley covering the Telford area.

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