Ancient Monuments

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Cattal Bridge

A Scheduled Monument in Cattal, North Yorkshire

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Latitude: 53.9801 / 53°58'48"N

Longitude: -1.3187 / 1°19'7"W

OS Eastings: 444777.222679

OS Northings: 453999.042445

OS Grid: SE447539

Mapcode National: GBR MQ7D.9Z

Mapcode Global: WHD9V.Q773

Entry Name: Cattal Bridge

Scheduled Date: 11 June 1976

Last Amended: 15 July 2003

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1021018

English Heritage Legacy ID: 34721

County: North Yorkshire

Civil Parish: Cattal

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): North Yorkshire


The monument includes a bridge of three arches across the River Nidd. The
bridge carries a minor road, the C282 and is known to the County Council
as Bridge number 1727, Cattal. The bridge is Listed Grade II.

The village of Cattal lies on the north bank of the River Nidd where
Rudgate Roman Road crosses the river. It is not known if the Roman
crossing was via a bridge, but there was a timber bridge at Cattal by the
mid-16th century as it was noted by the antiquarian John Leyland. The
current bridge, which forms the monument, lies some 150m upstream from the
line of the Roman Road and was built in the 18th century. Apart from
repairs following vehicle impacts, mainly to the parapets, it is
effectively unaltered and has not been strengthened. In the 1990s it was
assessed to be able to carry 33 tonnes and was given a signed gross axle
weight limit of 5 tonnes.

The bridge is built in limestone ashlar and has three segmental arches
with double arch rings that are chamfered and built in two orders. The
central arch has a span of just over 15m and the side arches nearly 11m.
The piers have triangular cutwaters that are extended up to the
carriageway to provide pedestrian refuges, this being very necessary as
the deck is less than 4m wide between the parapets. The two refuges on the
eastern side of the bridge are further protected by bump stones.

A number of features are excluded from the scheduling: these are; all
modern sign posts; the tarmac road surface; and the telephone services
that cross the bridge. The ground beneath all these features is, however,

The site of the monument is shown on the attached map extract.
It includes a 2 metre boundary around the archaeological features,
considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

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.

Cattal Bridge is a good example of an 18th century bridge. It is
considered to be of archaeological importance because it has not been
widened or strengthened and will thus retain original constructional
details that have frequently been lost from other bridges.

Source: Historic England


Books and journals
Jervoise, E, Ancient Bridges of Northern England, (1931)

Source: Historic England

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