27 November 2013

Bridges

Jeff Bridges
Ms Carol Sheila of 69 Wombat Close, Cairns, Australia has developed a bizarre notion that I, the Mighty Pudding of Yorkshire, have a psychological aversion to bridges. This post is written to dispel that outrageous and slanderous myth and I shall state here and now that I am in fact extremely fond of bridges and was a founder member of the Yorkshire Bridge Appreciation Society. In my view bridges are extremely useful for crossing waterways that would otherwise make us wet or necessitate massive detours.

It is a little known fact bridges were invented by a Yorkshireman - Herbert Egdirb who realised that if he placed two long planks of wood over the River Swale in Swaledale he could avoid walking seven and a half miles simply to milk his cow - Nigella.

I have lost count of the number of bridges I have been across from The Bridge on the River Kwai, Thailand to The Humber Bridge near Hull and from Tower Bridge in London to the Forth Road Bridge in Bonny Scotland. Many of these bridges I have stopped to photograph - much to the annoyance of other motorists but it is the simpler bridges of the countryside that I adore the most. Aesthetically pleasing bridges with history. And from my extensive digital photo files I have fished out these three examples:-
Monsal Head Railway Viaduct, Derbyshire
Pataua footbridge, New Zealand
Bridge over the River Noe, Edale, Derbyshire
This was the unabridged version of this post, The abridged version can be found at www.ilovebridges.com or simply purchase a copy of  "Why I am a Bridgeoholic" from Yorkshire Pudding Enterprises plc.. Send a cheque for £32.50 (US $52.70) and allow up to eleven years for delivery - or have I burnt my bridges now?

22 comments:

  1. Nice bridges. Ever been to Worsborough Bridge?
    "Pont" is the Catalan word for bridge, by the way - maybe that's where pontoon comes from, or maybe not.

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    1. Ricky Ponting is/was an Australian cricketer - perhaps that is where the Catalan word "pont" comes from. And Brian, of course I have been to Worsbrough Bridge (note spelling). It is the centre of the known universe!

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    2. Pont is actually the Latin word for bridge, and it where we get such words as Ponce de Leon, Pont Neuf, and pontiff. The Latin precedes the Catalan.

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    3. I stand (sort of) corrected. Didn't know the correct spelling for W.Bridge, even though I've been a zillion times - but never taken a map. My students would kill me - or the missus ... (putting some bait out in case she's re-visiting your blog after yesterday's incursion).
      I did know Catalan comes from Latin - in fact, I've been suitably brainwashed into believing it came directly from Latin and is not an off-shoot of Spanish as those nasty men in Madrid would have us believe.
      And back to bridges - I'll take up the gauntlet, and post a bridge pic too one of these days!

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  2. I liked the first Bridges best as Rooster in True Grit.

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    1. I bet he's the sort of guy you'd post as "eye candy"!

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  3. No, Sydney Harbour Bridge is the centre of the known universe !!!

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    1. Never heard of it but I have heard of the Breakfast Creek Bridge in Brisbane.

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  4. I have walked across the bridge over the Rio Grande between Brownsville, Texas, and Matamoros, Mexico. I have driven across bridges at the entrance to San Francisco Bay; the mouth of the Columbia River; the Mississippi River at seven different places; the Ohio River at six different places; the Hudson River at four different places; the Potomac at Washington, D.C.; and since I am beginning to sound like Putz I will sign off by saying simply <><><><><><><><><><>

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    1. rhymeswithputz has a nice ring to it <><><> like a bridge been crossed as potomac where i did d.c.cross once isn't it fine in virginia <><>plenty bridges there or cards<>

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    2. God, you sound like him too !! Come back YP. I can at least understand what you say !

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    3. I sound like God or Putz?....Don't fret - I was only fooling around Helen!

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  5. Yorky, doth protest too loudly they say. The worrying thing about this is that some poor student will now Google Yorkshire Bridges and be writing Herbert Egdirb is the father of bridge building on their next assignment. Thank you for three lovely specimens from the sealed section of Bridgaholic Monthly. Bridges are beautiful things, and we all should devote more blog space to them.

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    1. Sorry I forgot to mention the Stony Creek Falls Bridge. And that poor student you are thinking about will get an A on his or her assignment simply for referring to Herbert. I know you damned teachers get lots of holiday time so why not pen a bestseller when you're bored Carol - "Bridges of Queensland" with photographs, maps and travellers' bridge tales etc..

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  6. Funny! Clever post!

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    1. Thanks for dropping by Red. Glad I made you chuckle!

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  7. I'm quite partial to the first Bridge depicted!

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    1. Would you like it gift-wrapped Lee?

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    2. Au naturale will do thanks, Yorkie. :)

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  8. I love bridges. They are engineering triumphs (yes, I know engineering was born in Yorkshire). Bridges are there to span something, to link communities, encourage commerce. As such and unlike the finest building designed by the most prestigious architect yet concealed within a city, they stand in splendid isolation open to the critical scrutiny of the observer. From the felled log linking two villages, the Clifton suspension bridge, the bridge across the Menai Straights linking Wales to Anglesey, the mighty and magnificent span bridging the North South divide across the Humber to the highest suspension bridge in the world (also designed by a British architect), the Millau Suspension Bridge, they along with countless other notable bridges around the world stand testament to British engineering and the exquisite beauty of mathematical engineering. Ever longer, ever more exquisite spans.

    I love bridges. Believe it or not, there's some in Newcastle I really would like to see before I die! I want to build an impossibly thin unsupported span across my pond using pre stressed glued marine ply laminate. It would be like a wafer thin gentle arch spanning the pond. Anyone looking at it would think it impossible that such a structure could support the weight of a butterfly and be wary of setting foot upon it, Then I would see their amazement as, having reached the other side, they realise the apparently impossible was possible, That's engineering and I love it. Bridges are a wonderful, visible expression of the engineer's skill. Bridges are useful. I just hope I can stay alive long enough to build mine. Imagine how beautiful a thirty metre unsupported span no thicker than half a foot.

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    1. Hippo, I am impressed by your love of bridges too. A man who absolutely appreciate the beauty of bridges!

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  9. Hey Mr Pudding I built that bridge in Edale, glad you like it.

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