Hampden Bridge (Kangaroo Valley)

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Hampden Bridge
Hampden Bridge KValley 2008.JPG
Hampden Bridge 2008
Coordinates 34°43′40″S 150°31′16″E / 34.72778°S 150.52111°E / -34.72778; 150.52111Coordinates: 34°43′40″S 150°31′16″E / 34.72778°S 150.52111°E / -34.72778; 150.52111
Carries Moss Vale Road (B73)
Crosses Kangaroo River
Locale Kangaroo Valley, New South Wales, Australia
Design Suspension bridge
Total length 252 feet (76.8 m)[1]
Width 18 feet (5.5 m)
Constructed by Loveridge and Hudson
Construction begin 1895
Opened 19 May 1898
Hampden Bridge in Kangaroo Valley

Hampden Bridge is a suspension bridge across the Kangaroo River, located in the town of Kangaroo Valley, New South Wales, Australia. It is named after Lord Hampden, Governor of New South Wales from 1895 to 1899.

It is one of few suspension bridges in Australia.


Hampden Bridge was designed by Ernest Macartney de Burgh, the colony's Assistant Engineer for Bridges, to replace the decaying timber truss bridge which originally spanned the Kangaroo River. The bridge was opened on the 19 May 1898, just six days before floods washed the old bridge away.[2] Construction was by Thomas Loveridge and Herbert Hudson and began in 1895. At the conclusion they formed a partnership, Loveridge and Hudson.

A public holiday was declared in Kangaroo Valley for the bridge opening. The bridge was opened by the Minister for Public Works, J.H. Young.[3]


A well-known local tourist attraction, Hampden Bridge features four large crenellated turrets made of locally quarried sandstone. It is 252 feet (76.8 m) and one lane wide. The bridge forms part of the Moss Vale Road. Hampden Bridge is the only surviving suspension bridge from the colonial period in New South Wales;[4] and is the oldest and only timber suspension bridge still carrying vehicular traffic still in operation within Australia.[citation needed]

The bridge's medieval tower style is an example of the Gothic Revival architecture popular in late nineteenth-century Australia.[5] This elaborate form, and the relatively sophisticated structural design of the span, reflect the importance of this river crossing at the time of construction: the Cambewarra Road (now the Moss Vale Road) was then a major route from Sydney to the south coast of NSW.[6]

In 2012 the bridge underwent a major A$3 million renovation by Roads and Maritime Services, after many years of lobbying by local resident Bruce Ramsay, who agitated for the preservation of this iconic structure.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "THE MINISTER FOR WORKS AT KANGAROO VALLEY.". The Sydney Morning Herald (18,777). New South Wales, Australia. 20 May 1898. p. 3. Retrieved 7 August 2016 – via National Library of Australia. 
  2. ^ "Hampden Bridge, Kangaroo Valley, NSW". Timber Building in Australia. Archived from the original on 12 May 2013. Retrieved 19 September 2006. 
  3. ^ "The Minister for Works at Kangaroo Valley". Sydney Morning Herald. 20 May 1898. p. 3. Retrieved 29 October 2010. 
  4. ^ "Hampden Bridge",Kangaroo Valley Tourist Accessed 19 September 2006.
  5. ^ R. Sandall. ""Medieval spells". Archived from the original on 22 August 2009. 
  6. ^ "Hampden Bridge, Kangaroo Valley". Office of Environment and Heritage. Retrieved 14 May 2010.