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Coppermill Bridge

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Coppermill Bridge (Horseshoe Point)

P1060584

Coppermill footbridge crosses the mouth of the Coppermill Stream at its confluence with the earlier course of the Lea, prior to the development of Springfield Marina. The wide bend in the river was known as Horseshoe Point.

There are two bridges at this point today. The first is a late 20th century road bridge and the second a disused footbridge. It is the footbridge that is of interest here.

The bridge is set at a relatively high level, which seems to indicate that it was designed to allow boats to pass beneath, probably to reach a wharf at theCoppermill, further upstream.

The 'Copper Mill Bridge' is indicated on the Stanford's Map of 1864 and 1878.The bridge connected together three footpaths: A diagonal path northwards across Walthamstow Marsh from Lea Bridge; a footpath travelling eastwards to the Copper Mills (and onwards to Walthamstow) and westward across High Bridge towards Spring Hill.

The main span is a narrow concrete beam with metal guard railing. The main span rests upon stone padstones set into the brickwork ramps which clearly suggest an earlier bridge of iron or timber.

A V2 rocket exploded near the bridge in October 1944. A watchmanwas killed, the wooden bridge was damaged and Radley's boathouse nearby was damaged or destroyed. The central span was replaced with the current concrete beam in 1948.

Another V2 rocket landed nearby on Walthamstow Marsh, whereBomb Crater Pondsits today.

The bridge is in a degraded state and closed to pedestrians. Signs erected on the road bridge assert that this is a 'permissive route' (i.e not a highway or public right of way). It would be interesting to inquire into the status of the footbridge: Is it in fact a public right of way and do the signs misdirect regarding the status of the footbridge?

References


www.bombsight.org



leabridge.org.uk December 2012
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