Tower Bridge celebrates its 125th birthday


Blackleaf
+2
#1  Top Rated Post
Tower Bridge, one of Britain's greatest and most iconic landmarks, celebrates its 125th birthday today...

Happy birthday Tower Bridge: 125 years since London's leading landmark opened

JAMES DUNHAM ITV LONDON PRODUCER
ITV NEWS



For 125 years Tower Bridge has been a defining structure, a world landmark, for thousands of people a way to get to work, a passing point on a boat's journey, a picture opportunity for social media and for many there's the personal connection.

In 1886, a mammoth eight year effort began involving hundreds of workers who quite literally risked their lives to create the bridge.

The divers who had to work nine-hour shifts in dangerous conditions to dig out nearly six metres of gravel to sink the bridge's foundations.

Dirk Bennett, who manages the Tower Bridge exhibition, describes them as heroes: "Respect to these guys, they worked under very difficult conditions. If you imagine the shoes alone weighed over 16 kilograms and the helmet 16 kilograms plus. All in and all they carried 87/90 kilograms of weight with them and had to work in the cold and the dark. It's really back breaking, laborious and dangerous work that they had to do."

Chris Earlie is the Head of Tower Bridge and says it's a miracle the structure was built in the first place.

One of the first women believed to work on Tower Bridge was Hannah Griggs who was a cook for the bridge master from 1911 to 1914.

Today, a giant poster of Hannah forms part of the Tower Bridge exhibition.


Hannah Griggs is believed to be the first woman to work at Tower Bridge. Credit: Tower Bridge


For Susan Belcher, Hannah Griggs' granddaughter, who never got to to meet her grandmother, there is a huge sense of pride.

"I feel part of the Tower Bridge family. I think it would've just been a job and she would've been grateful for a job and probably did it to the best of her ability, not realising that all these years later that this bridge is known throughout the world."


Ahead of the 2012 Games the Olympic rings were suspended on one of the glass walkways. Credit: PA

When all eyes have been on London, Tower Bridge has helped showcase the capital to the world.

Ahead of the 2012 games, the Olympic rings were suspended on top of one of the glass walkways.


Suzanne Pitts and Martin Pitts were married on Tower Bridge

Tower Bridge has even laid down the foundations for future relationships. Martin and Suzanne Pitts married 42 metres above the Thames last year.

Suzanne said, "Just to be in Tower Bridge was amazing. It brought our families, who comes from London, together. It brought them back a lot of memories."

Martin added, "It was a bit surreal at times to look out and think we're getting married on this bridge."

Over the weekend Tower Bridge will be celebrating its birthday with a number of events.

Five facts about Tower Bridge



US President Bill Clinton was stopped by a bridge lift in 1997 on an official visit to London. Under law, river traffic always gets priority and when a boat was approaching the bridge, the technical officer at the time had to stop Mr Clinton's motorcade.

In 1952 Albert Gunter was driving the 78 bus across Tower Bridge towards Shoreditch. Before he could cross, he soon realised that the bridge was about to rise. He made the split-second decision to accelerate the bus, clearing a 1.8m drop. He was given a 10 bonus for his bravery.

In 1977 Tower Bridge was painted red, white and blue to celebrate the Queen's Silver Jubilee.

Over 50 different designs were submitted for Tower Bridge.

When it first opened the bridge would lift thousands of times a year. Nowadays the number is in the hundreds.

A structure which still catches people's attention 125 years on.


https://www.itv.com/news/london/2019...ndmark-opened/
 
Curious Cdn
+1
#2
Amazing that Nazi bombs didn't get it. Bridges would have been fairly high up on their target lists.
 
Blackleaf
#3
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

Amazing that Nazi bombs didn't get it. Bridges would have been fairly high up on their target lists.

Many of the most iconic buildings of London were given extra protection during the Blitz, as it was thought seeing any of them destroyed would cause a huge drop in morale of the nation.

St Paul's Cathedral is the most famous example, but other London landmarks deliberately saved include the Victoria & Albert Museum, the British Museum, Senate House and the Tower of London.
 
Hoid
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

Amazing that Nazi bombs didn't get it. Bridges would have been fairly high up on their target lists.

bridges are difficult targets for high alt bombing. Near misses don't count. you need a direct hit on a narrow target and its night and the bridge is dark.

but it is an interesting question. yiou would have thought it would have been a high priority target.Worth maybe sending some suicide stukas in during the day time.
 
Blackleaf
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

bridges are difficult targets for high alt bombing. Near misses don't count. you need a direct hit on a narrow target and its night and the bridge is dark.

but it is an interesting question. yiou would have thought it would have been a high priority target.Worth maybe sending some suicide stukas in during the day time.

Even though in the days before laser-guided precision bombing bridges were difficult to hit, Goring actually ordered his boys to target bridges. No London bridges were destroyed, but several bridges over the Tyne in Newcastle were.
 
petros
#6
Terror bombing doesn't need accuracy. Not being an industrial threat, it was purly a terror target.
 
Curious Cdn
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by petros View Post

Terror bombing doesn't need accuracy. Not being an industrial threat, it was purly a terror target.

Bridges are of the highest level of infrastructure and they are usually # 1 targets up there with power stations and airfields.
 
petros
#8
Yup. If it connected a arms factory to a rail line or something of importance. Were they making arms in downtown London?
 
Blackleaf
#9
It's not the first time this year that the bridge has hit the headlines. Earlier this month people gathered and watched in amazement at a man sunbathing on top of it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MxBBax0zBJA
 
Hoid
#10
I agree. Its astounding they never got it - but maybe they did.and I don't know the history well enough.

Maybe they were planning to take over the city and wanted the bridge in place for their own use.

I think Mr Trump (Hitler) was hoping to get Mr Kim (Churchill) to throw in with him. Team up so to speak.
 
petros
+2
#11
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

I agree. Its astounding they never got it - but maybe they did.and I don't know the history well enough.
Maybe they were planning to take over the city and wanted the bridge in place for their own use.
It think Mr Trump (Hitler) was hoping to get Mr Kim (Churchill) to throw in with him. Team up so to speak.

Maybe Germany got its ass kicked during the Battle of Britian and resources were better spent on Operation Barbarossa.
 
Curious Cdn
+2
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by petros View Post

Maybe Germany got its ass kicked during the Battle of Britian and resources were better spent on Operation Barbarossa.

The RAF made it difficult for the Luftwaffe and their precision targeting probably went out the window, early on. Let's dump this load of bombs and get the hell out of here, Fritz!"
 
Curious Cdn
#13
Quote: Originally Posted by petros View Post

Yup. If it connected a arms factory to a rail line or something of importance. Were they making arms in downtown London?

Every bridge is connected to everywhere and in total war, infrastructure is targeted early on.
 
petros
#14
Justify it all you want. It wasn't a target of importance.

A bombing raid to piss off pedestrians does what exactly in hampering arms production?
 
Curious Cdn
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by petros View Post

Justify it all you want. It wasn't a target of importance.
A bombing raid to piss off pedestrians does what exactly in hampering arms production?

They bombed the crap out of the London Docks just a couple of miles downstream ... no war production going on down there but all of the bridges over the Thames moved the goods landed at those docks ... the Luftwaffe's #1 target in London for years ... to the rest England. War production was not happening in London, much. Try Glasgow and Belfast and Manchester and Birmingham and Sheffield and Nottingham ...

What you say makes no sense.
 
Hoid
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

Every bridge is connected to everywhere and in total war, infrastructure is targeted early on.

infrastructure is also saved in order to be used by the invader - this is what operation market garden was all about - securing bridges across the Rhine in order to facilitate the invasion of Germany,.
 
Curious Cdn
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

infrastructure is also saved in order to be used by the invader - this is what operation market garden was all about - securing bridges across the Rhine in order to facilitate the invasion of Germany,.

An old boss of mine was an ex-Canadian Army Captain (in fact, a couple of old bosses of mine were those). This one was part of the October, 1970 action in Montreal during the FLQ crisis and was in charge of a squad of soldiers assigned to control the Merrier bridge. The bridge was wired with demolition charges, as were all of the bridges ringing Montreal Island and Laval with the main shore. The other part of the plan was that they stationed Vulcan gattling guns pointing down each of the bridges towards Montreal. Their orders were to contain the population of Montreal Island to the Island and let nobody off. The bridges would be blown last but the demolition charges were all laid early on and ready to go. This was no theoretical exercise.
 
Hoid
#18
it would be impossible to employ the required ROEs without the War Measures Act.
 
Curious Cdn
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

it would be impossible to employ the required ROEs without the War Measures Act.

... "required" to round up a dozen FLQ terrorists ...

We do that now, periodically without invoking martial law. Pierre Trudeau's ego was bigger than the Canadian Shield.
 
petros
#20
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

They bombed the crap out of the London Docks just a couple of miles downstream ... no war production going on down there but all of the bridges over the Thames moved the goods landed at those docks ... the Luftwaffe's #1 target in London for years ... to the rest England. War production was not happening in London, much. Try Glasgow and Belfast and Manchester and Birmingham and Sheffield and Nottingham ...
What you say makes no sense.

Docks make sense. Perhaps a nice big pedestrian bridge came in handy as a landmark in the moonlight for more terror bombings?
 
Hoid
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

... "required" to round up a dozen FLQ terrorists ...

We do that now, periodically without invoking martial law. Pierre Trudeau's ego was bigger than the Canadian Shield.

As I mentioned - nobody knew the size or extent of the threat at the time.

And while Trudeau may have had a large ego the decision to invoke the War Measures Act was taken because both Bourassa and Drapaeu asked for it, and it was a decision made in cabinet.

This knee-jerk anti Trudeau shtick is tiresome.

He did not simply invoke the War Measures Act on his own
 
Curious Cdn
+1
#22
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

As I mentioned - nobody knew the size or extent of the threat at the time.
And while Trudeau may have had a large ego the decision to invoke the War Measures Act was taken because both Bourassa and Drapaeu asked for it, and it was a decision made in cabinet.
This knee-jerk anti Trudeau shtick is tiresome.
He did not simply invoke the War Measures Act on his own

Trudeau was an arsehole and I, for one, was glad to see him leave Bytown for good.
 
Hoid
#23
It should be noted that this occurred in 1970.

Trudeau would go on to become Canada's third longest serving Prime Minister - more or less indicating that what he did in 1970 was seen as the right thing to do by the majority of Canadians.
 
Curious Cdn
#24
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

It should be noted that this occurred in 1970.
Trudeau would go on to become Canada's third longest serving Prime Minister - more or less indicating that what he did in 1970 was seen as the right thing to do by the majority of Canadians.

Further proof of the zombie-like nature of Canadian voters, sometimes.
 
Hoid
#25
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

Further proof of the zombie-like nature of Canadian voters, sometimes.

Further proof that the Canadian public understood and supported the War Measures Act.
 
Curious Cdn
#26
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

Further proof that the Canadian public understood and supported the War Measures Act.

I'm sure that they understood and supported the Sixties Scoop, as well.
 
Hoid
#27
In fact Canadians didn't find out about the 60s Scoop until well after the fact.

Some of them still have no idea what it was.

On the other hand invoking the War Measures Act was a simple matter of public record.


Not the same thing at all and just one more attempt to some way - any way - justify or explain your ridiculous anti-Trudeauism.
 
petros
+1
#28
60's Scoop? Never tried it but I have done the 31 flavours joint.
 
taxslave
#29
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

An old boss of mine was an ex-Canadian Army Captain (in fact, a couple of old bosses of mine were those). This one was part of the October, 1970 action in Montreal during the FLQ crisis and was in charge of a squad of soldiers assigned to control the Merrier bridge. The bridge was wired with demolition charges, as were all of the bridges ringing Montreal Island and Laval with the main shore. The other part of the plan was that they stationed Vulcan gattling guns pointing down each of the bridges towards Montreal. Their orders were to contain the population of Montreal Island to the Island and let nobody off. The bridges would be blown last but the demolition charges were all laid early on and ready to go. This was no theoretical exercise.

SHould have blown them while the getting was good.
 
taxslave
#30
Quote: Originally Posted by Hoid View Post

As I mentioned - nobody knew the size or extent of the threat at the time.
And while Trudeau may have had a large ego the decision to invoke the War Measures Act was taken because both Bourassa and Drapaeu asked for it, and it was a decision made in cabinet.
This knee-jerk anti Trudeau shtick is tiresome.
He did not simply invoke the War Measures Act on his own

The usual Liberal Anything Quebec wants it gets.
 

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