Westminster Labour is calling on Historic England to work with Westminster Council to return Brunel’s original Bishop’s Bridge to Paddington.
Brunel’s bridge, his first in cast iron, had been forgotten by history but was discovered by researchers in 2004 buried inside a later bridge and shortly before both were to be demolished and replaced by a brand new structure. This original bridge built by Britain’s greatest engineer dates to 1838.
The bridge was dismantled in 2006 with plans to move it a short distance to a new location spanning the Grand Union Canal at Paddington Basin. Instead, Brunel’s masterpiece has been kept in storage in Portsmouth for the last fourteen years and the BBC now report that the Hampshire Buildings Preservation Trust has asked for the bridge to be installed on permanent display in Portsmouth.
Councillor Geoff Barraclough, Westminster Labour’s planning spokesperson, said:
“Brunel is synonymous with Paddington. His great train shed still stands here in monument to his engineering genius. Historic England should return Brunel’s bridge to Paddington where it belongs and put it to good use as a pedestrian crossing over the canal.”
Interested? Find out more about the bridge.