Godmanchester Chinese Bridge

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The bridge in Godmanchester

Godmanchester Chinese Bridge is a landmark of the town of Godmanchester, Huntingdonshire (now administered as part of Cambridgeshire, England). It is a pedestrian bridge that spans a mill stream on the River Great Ouse and is, as the name suggests, built in an ostensibly Chinese style. The original was constructed in 1827[1] to designs by the architect James Gallier, but it fell into a bad condition and was replaced with a replica by the local council in 1960.

The origins of the bridge are somewhat unusual. "Chinese Chippendale" had been a fashion of the mid-18th century, a time when the town was building a mansion for the Receiver General of Huntingdonshire by the river. Island Hall had included a rather smaller Chinese bridge, linking it to an ornamental island. It seems likely that this served as the inspiration for the public bridge several decades later – its white timbers are also in the Chinese Chippendale style.

The bridge was removed by crane on Tuesday 9 February 2010. A replica, built in Yorkshire by CTS Bridges, was put into position on Monday 15th and Tuesday 16 February.

In popular culture[edit]

The bridge was the principal subject for the song "Godmanchester Chinese Bridge" by The Howl and the Hum[2]


Coordinates: 52°19′09″N 0°10′33″W / 52.31926°N 0.17582°W / 52.31926; -0.17582