Monument record HAD 008 - Toppesfield Bridge

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Toppesfield Bridge. listed building


Grid reference Centred TM 0257 4214 (50m by 50m)
Map sheet TM04SW


Type and Period (1)

Full Description

Toppesfield Bridge.
Three pointed arches, each with six chamfered ribs. Brick and stone. Total span circa 16 yards (R1).
Probably C14 or earlier (R2). Dates from 14th century.
This is the finest bridge in Suffolk, having three pointed arches, each with six chamfered ribs. These, and the inner arch-rings, are built of stone, but the outer rings and the faces and the parapets of the bridge are of brick. The total span is about 16 yds, and the width between the parapets is 21 ft, the bridge having been widened in brick by about 10 ft on the downstream side in 16th century(S1).
Lands (adjoining?) named `Priestisbriggeland' and `Briggesland' in Edward Is (1272-1307) reign (S1)(R1).
1812: For paper on repair to bridge see (R3).
1981: Brickwork in good condition. It would appear that the chamfered stone arches mentioned above have been replaced by brick, 2 in NE arch, 2 in centre, 1 in SW arch. 1 or 2 coping tiles broken. Some graffitti on tiles (S1).
1986: In good condition. Widening in brick is on upstream (NW) side, not downstream (SE) side, as recorded above. On NW side, brickwork of arches, bridge and parapet is relatively regular and homogenous. On SE side, brickwork is a jumbled multi-period patchwork, including some stone in its lower parts. Stone ribs of all three arches include fresh, recently- inserted blocks. Some stone ribs replaced or repaired in brick at an earlier date. At NE end (towards town) SE side of bridge runs straight to river bank, while parapet, here of relatively fresh brick, curves away from it to W, suggesting that road has been realigned. Buttress supports SE side of bridge at SW end (S1).1991: Said to be maintained but at risk. "Badly repointed. At risk from heavy lorries and farm vehicles regularly using the bridge" (S2).
Scheduled Monument

Sources/Archives (8)

  • --- Bibliographic reference: Jervoise, E.. 1932. The Ancient Bridges of Mid and Eastern England. 128.
  • <R1> (No record type): Pigot Rev H, The History of Hadleigh, 1869.
  • <M1> (No record type): SAM file:.
  • <S1> Unpublished document: Department of the Environment. Scheduling information.
  • <S2> (No record type): Suff Pres Soc (Paul Edwards) survey, table of results, 1991.
  • <R2> Index: OS. OS Card. OS, card TM04SW30.
  • <R3> (No record type): Paper regarding repair of Toppesfield Bridge, 1812, SRO (Bury) BA 500/ D1/2.
  • <S4> Serial: Suffolk Industrial Archaeological Society Newsletter. No 63, August 1998.

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Protected Status/Designation

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Related Events/Activities (3)

Record last edited

Sep 30 2016 3:32PM

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