Cantlop Bridge

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Cantlop Bridge
Cantlop Bridge 2016.jpg
Cantlop Bridge in 2016
Coordinates 52°39′06″N 2°42′53″W / 52.6518°N 2.7148°W / 52.6518; -2.7148Coordinates: 52°39′06″N 2°42′53″W / 52.6518°N 2.7148°W / 52.6518; -2.7148
Carries disused since the 1970s
Crosses Cound Brook
Locale Cantlop, Shropshire
Heritage status Grade II listed
Design Arch bridge
Material Cast-iron
Total length 9.5 metres (31 ft)
No. of spans 1
Designer Thomas Telford
Construction end 1818

Cantlop Bridge is a single span cast-iron road bridge over the Cound Brook, located to the north of Cantlop in the parish of Berrington, Shropshire. It was constructed in 1818 to a design possibly by Thomas Telford, being at least having been approved by him,[1] and replaced an unsuccessful cast iron coach bridge constructed in 1812.[2] The design of the bridge was innovative for the period, using a light-weight design of cast-iron lattice ribs to support the road deck in a single span, and appears to be a scaled-down version of a Thomas Telford bridge at Meole Brace, Shropshire. The bridge is the only surviving Telford-approved cast-iron bridge in Shropshire,[1] and is a Grade II listed building and scheduled monument. It originally carried the turnpike road from Shrewsbury to Acton Burnell.

History and Description[edit]

Thomas Telford worked as the County Surveyor of Shropshire between 1787 to 1834, and the bridge is reported to have once held a cast iron plate above the centre of the arch inscribed with "Thomas Telford Esqr - Engineer - 1818", which is apparently visible in historic photographs, but has not been in place since at least 1985.[2] The bridge design incorporates dressed red and grey sandstone abutments with ashlar dressings, these are slightly curved and ramped, with chamfered ashlar quoins, string courses, and moulded cornices.[2] The structural cast-iron consists of a single segmental span with four arched lattice ribs, braced by five transverse cast-ironmembers. The road deck is formed from cast-iron metal deck plates, tarmacked over, and now finished with gravel. The original parapets have at some point been replaced with painted cast-iron railings with dograils, dogbars and shaped end balusters.[2]


The bridge today remains as a monument only, being closed to vehicular traffic. It was bypassed by a more modern adjacent concrete bridge built in the 1970s. It is in the care of English Heritage and is freely accessible to pedestrians. A layby exists for visitors to park and there is an information board.


  1. ^ a b "English heritage Website: Cantlop Bridge". Retrieved 29 August 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d "English Heritage Pastscape website". Archived from the original on 9 October 2012. Retrieved 29 August 2011. 


  • Blackwall, A 1985. 'Historic Bridges of Shropshire', Shrewsbury: Shropshire Libraries
  • Burton, A 1999. 'Thomas Telford', London: Aurum Press
  • Sutherland, R J M 1997. 'Structural Iron, 1750–1850', Aldershot: Ashgate