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Royal Albert Bridge under construction, Saltash, Cornwall. 1858
View of the construction of the Royal Albert Bridge from the St Budeaux side of the Tamar river. The first span was in place and the second span was floated out on to the river on 10th July 1858. The image shows it being jacked into position as the piers are built up. The bridge was officially opened by Prince Albert on the 2nd May 1859. Isambard Kingdom Brunel's bridge consists of two 450ft arched tubular spans which meet in mid river on four cast iron columns secured to a central underwater pier. The spans were high enough to give the Royal Navy's tall ships clear heading
© From the collection of the RIC