Tower Bridge, probably the most famous bridge in the world. Talk of London and its architecture and the distinctive Thames landmark will be mentioned soon enough. Built to solve the increasing traffic problems of a city with a large river running through it.
Tower Bridge is an engineering marvel and an example of Victorian engineering at its best. Architecture to inspire, it looks like the two stone towers are solid and support the bridge and bastules, but the stone is a facade. A covering to hide and protect the iron structure underneath and to enable it to harmonise cosmetically with the surrounding area.
Where am I?
We stand at the base of the South side tower facing east, and the sun is dipping in the sky behind us. Ornate stonework and leaded windows loom above. On the left are the undersides of the road and upper foot bridges with the metal bracing visible on the right. Tower Bridge is a marvel to behold in action. The lower bridge opening to allow tall river traffic through. I took some video of the bastules in action on the day the reference image was taken, as I was lucky enough to see it in action. It’s amazingly fast, even for modern day engineering, and especially considering much of the action is over 100 years old and still going strong.
Tower Bridge was named for its location, adjacent to the Tower of London. You’d be forgiven for thinking that it’s towers inspired the name. It’s a common misconception. The reference image was taken on a gloriously sunny day, I seem to visit London on on insanely sunny days. It’s a knack. As a result glowing stonework dominates, aided by a healthy dose of artistic interpretation. These brilliant hues fade as we ascend the tower and are in stark contrast to the deep muted colours of the walkways. The bright blue handrails and bracing disappear against the brilliant cerulean blue sky
Iconic building and bridges like Tower Bridge are designed to impress and it’s easy to feel small when standing here looking up. Architecture to inspire even the most arrogant of minds, it’s hard to feel big when standing besides something as impressive as this.