Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Richmond Bridge

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The Richmond Bridge is a heritage listed arch bridge located on the B31 ("Convict Trail") in Richmond, 25 kilometres (15.5 mi) north of Hobart in Tasmania, Australia. It is the oldest bridge still in use in Australia.
HistoryThe foundation stone for the Richmond Bridge was laid on 11 December 1823 and construction continued using convict labour until completion in 1825. The bridge was originally named Bigge's Bridge after Royal Commissioner, John Thomas Bigge, who recognised the need for the bridge in 1820.
In 2005, the bridge was recognised as an outstanding historic place and added to the Australian National Heritage List.
ConstructionThe Richmond Bridge is constructed of sandstone quarried from Butchers Hill, hauled to the construction site by convicts using hand carts. It consists of four main arches, of span 4.3, 8.1, 8.3, 8.5, 8.3 and 4.1 metres (14.1, 26.6, 27.2, 27.9, 27.2, and 13.5 ft) respectively, which spring from sloping fins with angular leading edges aligned with the flow of the river.

Richmond Bridge was built in 1825 and is the oldest stone bridge in Australia spans the Coal River near the historic village of Richmond, to reach it just a short 40 minute drive from Hobart. The Richmond Bridge is a lasting symbol of Tasmania's convict heritage and reminds locals and visitors similar of the forced migration of prisoners that contributed to the development of Australian society. 
"Back to the river, the bridge is the next notable object. It is a fine stone structure of five arches; and, being picturesquely situated with the little islands below it, is an ornament to the river. The first stone was laid on 23 August 1774. It was opened in 1777.
The post office is in George Street, three minutes' walk from the bridge, and open on week days from 7 am till 9.30 pm, the last post for London being at 10 pm."

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