J3473 : The Albert Bridge, Belfast (5)

taken 11 years ago, near to Ballymacarret, Belfast County Borough, Shankill, Beal Feirste and Sydenham, Northern Ireland

The Albert Bridge, Belfast (5)
The Albert Bridge, Belfast (5)
See J3473 : The Albert Bridge, Belfast (4). The underside of the middle span, lit by the low autumn sun reflecting off the Lagan. The many girders make the bridge a popular nocturnal rooting place for starlings. Continue to J3573 : The Albert Bridge, Belfast (6).
The Albert Bridge, Belfast

The first bridge, across the River Lagan at Maysfields, opened in 1831. It was constructed in hammered whinstone, had five arches and owned by a private company which charged a toll for crossing. It was acquired by the council in 1860 for 4,500 and the toll abolished.
The bridge survived until 15 September 1886 when the middle 70ft collapsed during the night. The matter was raided in Parliament where Hansard records
21 September 1886 vol 309 cc1113-4 1113
MR. SEXTON (Belfast, W., and Sligo, S.)
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether any lives have been lost through the collapse of the Albert Bridge, Belfast, on Wednesday evening last; whether the bridge was thronged at the time of the accident; whether it is true, as reported, that a gradual sinking of the structure had been observed for the past two or three weeks; whether the Town Council is responsible for having allowed the continuance of a thoroughfare across the bridge weeks after its collapsing condition became apparent; and, how soon an official inquiry will be held?
THE CHIEF SECRETARY (SIR MICHAEL HICKS-BEACH) (Bristol, W.)
So far as is known one life was lost through this accident. Fortunately it is not a fact that the bridge was thronged at the time. It is, I understand, true that a gradual sinking had previously been observed; but the immediate collapse of the bridge was not apprehended. I am advised that the question of responsibility is one of law, which must be decided in a Court of Justice, if raised. I am not aware that there is any obligation on the Government to institute an official inquiry; but I shall look further into this matter.
The present structure, of granite with three cast-iron arches, was built in 1888/90 to a design by JC Bretland, the City Surveyor.

Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   © Copyright Albert Bridge and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
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J3473, 877 images   (more nearby search)
Photographer
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Date Taken
Monday, 25 October, 2010   (more nearby)
Submitted
Monday, 25 October, 2010
Category
Bridge   (more nearby)
Subject Location
Irish: geotagged! J 349 739 [100m precision]
WGS84: 54:35.7566N 5:54.7594W
Camera Location
Irish: geotagged! J 350 740
View Direction
Southwest (about 225 degrees)
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