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Scheduled Monument record MDR3498 - Bakewell Bridge, Bakewell

Type and Period (1)

  • (Medieval to Post Medieval - 1300 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

The main road to Baslow is carried by a massive bridge having five pointed arches, each with nine ribs. Five of these belong to the original structure, the others form part of the early 19th century widening. (1) Bakewell Bridge is one of the oldest in England; it consists of five gothic arches with triangular quoins and is considered a perfect example of its kind. The first mention of a bridge at Bakewell was in the reign of Edward I. The present structure is an Ancient Monument. (2) Bakewell Bridge. Grade I listed structure. Bridge, c.1300, widened 19th century. Ashlar sandstone. Five pointed arches with ribbed soffits; triangular cutwaters rise as pedestrian retreats; band beneath parapet. Cross base on apex of downstream cutwater to west of central arch. Upstream side rebuilt 19th century in same style. Approach walls continue from the parapet towards the town. (4) Photographic record. (6, 7) It has been suggested that the bridge may be later than previously thought, possibly even 18th century. The only known record in the Quarter Sessions, for example, is as follows "Bakewell/Ashford Mic (Michaelmas Sitting) 1713. Made wider in 1823". No earlier reference to a stone bridge has been identified, including an absence of comments by visitors to the town, such as Celia Fiennes. The bridge may have been built in the early 18th century by the Duke of Rutland, who owned the land on both banks of the river at that time. (8) Notes recorded by Carrington, the Duke of Rutland's archivist, give documentary evidence that there was a stone bridge at Bakewell at the time of the purchase of land by Richard de Brigham in the reign of Edward I, which he considered not to have been on the same site as the present bridge but probably near to it. The bridge was near a fosse or ditch. In 1381 there is a reference to land, a messuage and garden close to the bridge at Bakewell, which was described as the great bridge. It is suggested that the 14th century bridge may have been just to the south-east of the present bridge. (9)

Sources/Archives (9)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Jervoise, E. 1932. The Ancient Bridges of Mid and Eastern England. pp 27-28.
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: 1966. Bakewell Derbyshire Official Guide. p51.
  • <3> Personal Observation: F1 FDC 16-NOV-66.
  • <4> Bibliographic reference: 1974. DOE(HHR) Bakewell Area, Dist of West Derbyshire.
  • <5> Index: NDAT. 0139. 0139.
  • <6> Photograph: Peak District National Park Authority (PDNPA). Black and white photograph collection. 507.7-8, 475.34-37.
  • <7> Photograph: Peak District National Park Authority (PDNPA). Slide Collection. 827.1-4.
  • <8> Article in serial: Meeke, E (Bakewell and District Historical Society). 1992. 'Who dares?', Journal of the Bakewell & District Historical Society. No. 19, pp 22-29.
  • <9> Article in serial: Meeke, E (Bakewell and District Historical Society). 1993. 'Bakewell bridges. More light - more queries - more bridges', Bakewell & District Historical Society Journal. No. 20, pp 20-24.



Grid reference Centred SK 2194 6865 (51m by 43m) Centre

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

  • EDR1162

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Record last edited

Nov 6 2023 2:46PM

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