2 March 2010

Tyne Bridge under construction - 1927-1928 & 2010

From the High Level Bridge and Newcastle Quayside. Click on pics for larger versions.

The Tyne Bridge is probably Newcastle's most recognisable landmark. Opened by King George V and Queen Mary on October 10th 1928 it is widely supposed to be the precursor to the Sydney Harbour Bridge which opened in 1932.  Although both were built by Dorman Long and Co. of Middlesbrough, Sydney's bridge had already been under construction for over two years by the time work started in Newcastle, and both were in fact based on New York's Hell Gate Bridge which opened in 1916.

2010 photos © Chris Perriman


  1. I was at the maritime museum in Sydney a couple of years back and interrupted the tour guide who was giving the old "Newcastle Tyne Bridge was a test structure for ours" story. He wasn't very impressed when I told him he was wrong...

  2. Anonymous3/3/10 23:42

    I think, but am not sure, that the Hell Gate Bridge in New York was based on the

    "Wylam Railway Bridge".

    It was opened to traffic 6 October 1876. The ironwork is by the famous firm of Hawks, Crayshay & Co. of Gateshead with masonry and foundations by W E Jackson & Co. of Newcastle and the engineer was W G Laws. It was designed with a single span to avoid building piers in the river bed under which were shallow mine workings.There are similarities between this bridge and the Tyne Bridge.

    My family lived in Ovingham and my Grandfather worked for Stephenson for a while and then became a train driver. The family story was, Wylam 1st, New York 2nd and the rest followed on.

    But that is families for you.

    mrs K

  3. mosher, ha! that makes me laugh :)
    mrs k you should start a blog or write a book. i'd buy it.

    love the pics chris.