• © Chris Wilkins

Clifton Suspension Bridge

  • Saturday 11AM - 4PM

Venue number: 21

Clifton Suspension Bridge

  • Saturday 11 AM - 4 PM

Venue number: 21

  • © Chris Wilkins

Clifton Suspension Bridge

Rediscovered in 2002, the vaulted chambers in the Leigh Woods Abutment are an atmospheric piece of Brunelian engineering. Intrepid adventurers (over 7 years old) can don a hard hat, descend a ladder and peek through the door into Vault 4. You’ll be able to take a look into one of twelve chambers beneath the tower and see how the thick red sandstone walls were built on and around the sloping limestone rock of the Avon Gorge. Spot the stalactites forming on the ceiling and rubble left by Victorian builders.

Want to know how we care for the bridge? Our Maintenance Workshops (in the Bridgemaster’s Yard) will be open once again with a display of tools, equipment and bits of bridge (old and new)! Find out how we clear ice and snow from the bridge in winter, how we remove and maintain parts – and how we reach the saddles and chain at the tops of the towers or the cross girders under the deck.

Key Information

  • Address Bridge Road, BS8 3PA
  • Map View on our interactive map
  • Directions At the Visitor Centre, on Leigh Woods side of bridge
  • Accessibility Vaults have limited access due to ladder climb (7+). Maintenance workshops accessible to all and family friendly.
  • More info Please note that there will not be full access into the chamber on Doors Open Day due to health and safety restrictions.
  • Amenities
    Wheelchair access
    Accessible toilet
    Disabled parking
    Assistance dogs welcome
    Refreshments
    Toilet
    Baby changing facilities

Design Information

  • Built1830-1864
  • Designed byEngineer: I. K. Brunel
  • Building styleVictorian, Egyptian

The world famous Clifton Suspension Bridge was the far-fetched dream of wine merchant William Vick. Hailed as ‘the ornament of Bristol and the Wonder of the age’ when construction began in 1831, it was designed by 23 year old Isambard Kingdom Brunel and took over 30 years to complete, opening in 1864 as a memorial dedicated to the engineer. The bridge is illuminated each evening, lighting up half an hour before sunset. Photographers may like to visit the viewpoints on Sion Hill or at the Cumberland Basin.

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