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Waterloo Bridge

A Grade I Listed Building in Betws-y-Coed, Conwy

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Latitude: 53.0852 / 53°5'6"N

Longitude: -3.7954 / 3°47'43"W

OS Eastings: 279845

OS Northings: 355727

OS Grid: SH798557

Mapcode National: GBR 64.9NHR

Mapcode Global: WH663.NQV5

Entry Name: Waterloo Bridge

Listing Date: 30 May 1996

Last Amended: 30 May 1996

Grade: I

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 17827

Building Class: Transport

Location: Carrying the A5 at the SE approach to Betws-y-Coed, spanning the Afon Conwy.

County: Conwy

Community: Betws-y-Coed

Community: Betws-y-Coed

Traditional County: Caernarfonshire

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History: Cast iron road bridge built 1815-16 by Thomas Telford, engineer, as an important part of the new Shrewsbury to Holyhead road (A5), itself a heroic achievement in contemporary engineering and road building terms. The Waterloo Bridge, originally known as Llynnon Bridge, is thought to be the seventh major iron bridge in the world and with a span of over 30m is an impressive example of early iron technology. Its patriotic decorative expression and jingoistic dating inscription reveal a spirit of pioneering confidence and optimism during this important period of Britain's industrial and political growth. The bridge was founded by W. Hazeldine and the construction foreman was W. Stuttle.

Description: Wide single span iron road bridge, with masonry springing. The segmental arch bears the cast lettering: `This arch was constructed in the same year the battle of Waterloo was fought.' The spandrels contain bold foliate decoration, depicting the national emblems, the rose, thistle, shamrock and leek, partly polychromed. At the Betws end (W) appears, in raised lettering:` Thomas Telford Engineer;' at the E end appear the names of the founder and foreman, and the date 1815 to the centre. The arch soffit is reinforced with modern concrete coffering; the simple cast iron balustrades have been cantilevered outwards slightly in recent years.

Listed Grade 1 as a highly important and imaginatively-designed iron road bridge by Thomas Telford, engineer, a significant example of early iron technology.

References: RCAHMW Caernarvonshire, Vol.1., East, 1956, 20(89).
Atlas to the life of Thomas Telford, 1838).
E Hubbard, Clwyd, Buildings of Wales Series, (1986) p.105.

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