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Wyre Bridge

A Scheduled Monument in Wyre Piddle, Worcestershire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.1264 / 52°7'35"N

Longitude: -2.0565 / 2°3'23"W

OS Eastings: 396229.939215

OS Northings: 247565.535127

OS Grid: SO962475

Mapcode National: GBR 2JG.NWV

Mapcode Global: VHB0K.9TP8

Entry Name: Wyre Bridge

Scheduled Date: 26 June 1924

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1005269

English Heritage Legacy ID: WT 324

County: Worcestershire

Civil Parish: Wyre Piddle

Built-Up Area: Wyre Piddle

Traditional County: Worcestershire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Worcestershire

Church of England Parish: Fladbury, Hill and Moor, Wyre Piddle, Cropthorne and Charlton

Church of England Diocese: Worcester

Summary

Wyre Bridge 280m north of the Parish Church of Wyre Piddle.

Source: Historic England

Details

This record was the subject of a minor enhancement on 19 May 2015. This record has been generated from an "old county number" (OCN) scheduling record. These are monuments that were not reviewed under the Monuments Protection Programme and are some of our oldest designation records.

This monument includes a multi span bridge situated across the Piddle Brook north east of its confluence with the River Avon. The monument survives as a medieval three-span bridge that was rebuilt in the early 20th century. The bridge is constructed from sandstone and ashlar with red brick vaults. The bridge has a high parapet with a string course at the base and is capped with stone coping. The central arch over the river is the widest with smaller arches ether side. The arches have round heads and stone voussoirs with keystones and the central arch has an inscribed stone above the apex. The bridge has two pointed cut waters each with a spirelet surmounted by a ball finial. The bridge is approximately 22m long and 10m wide.

The bridge was mentioned in 1599 and rebuilt and widened in 1930. The inscribed stone reads: ‘W.D.C. Wyre Bridge widened and reconstructed 1930’ and ‘portions of the original bridge were preserved in the structure’. A second plaque is inscribed with WM Bushel and a partially legible late 18th century date.

Wyre Bridge is Listed at Grade II.

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Multi-span bridges are structures of two or more arches supported on piers. They were constructed throughout the medieval period for the use of pedestrians and packhorse or vehicular traffic, crossing rivers or streams, often replacing or supplementing earlier fords. During the early medieval period timber was used, but from the 12th century stone (and later brick) bridges became more common, with the piers sometimes supported by a timber raft. Most stone or brick bridges were constructed with pointed arches, although semicircular and segmental examples are also known. A common medieval feature is the presence of stone ashlar ribs underneath the arch. The bridge abutments and revetting of the river banks also form part of the bridge. Where medieval bridges have been altered in later centuries, original features are sometimes concealed behind later stonework, including remains of earlier timber bridges. The roadway was often originally cobbled or gravelled. The building and maintenance of bridges was frequently carried out by the church and by guilds, although landowners were also required to maintain bridges. From the mid-13th century the right to collect tolls, known as pontage, was granted to many bridges, usually for repairs; for this purpose many urban bridges had houses or chapels on them, and some were fortified with a defensive gateway.

Medieval multi-span bridges must have been numerous throughout England, but most have been rebuilt or replaced and less than 200 examples are now known to survive. As a rare monument type largely unaltered, surviving examples and examples that retain significant medieval and post- medieval fabric are considered to be of national importance.

Despite rebuilding and the insertion of road and path surfaces, the remains of Wyre Bridge 280m north of the Parish Church of Wyre Piddle survives comparatively well and contains a number of architectural features of considerable interest. Elements of the original structure will remain concealed behind later stone and brickwork and will provide important information on its construction and rebuilding.

Source: Historic England

Sources

Other
Pastscape Monument No:- 117993

Source: Historic England

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