The Transporter Bridge between Runcorn and Widnes (West Bank).
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia (from "Wonder Book of Engineering Wonders", 1931)
Until 1905, the only means of crossing the river Mersey between Runcorn and Widnes was by means of the railway bridge (which had a footpath) or by ferry. The Transporter Bridge consisted of two towers with a girder which spanned both the river Mersey and the Manchester Ship Canal. From this was suspended a transporter car which carried vehicles and pedestrians. The crossing took two and a half minutes, so allowing time for loading and unloading, about nine or ten trips per hour were possible. A power house was built on the Widnes side, to generate the electricity needed to power the trolley.The Transporter Bridge opened on 29th May 1905 and closed in 1961 when it was replaced by the Runcorn Bridge (later renamed the Silver Jubilee Bridge).
The Runcorn Bridge under construction in 1960.
Photograph provided by kind permission and © Jean Berry 2014