River Brue Structures

River Bridge


Bridge Name:   River Bridge
No.:   41
Build Date:    

  © Copyright somersetrivers.org

A timber bridge was built c.1784 across the Brue at the present bridge site, when Mark Moor was enclosed. It replaced the previous ford. In 1805 a carpenter, George Davey, was paid �10 17s. 11� d. for “work & Timber at Mark Bridge”. The present masonry bridge was built at a cost of �420 in 1812/13 by order of the Commissioners appointed under the Brue Drainage Act. It was struck by lightning and in a dilapidated state in 1874. The bridge bears an inscription “In memory of Albert E. Watts who was killed on this bridge Nov. 18th 1898 aged 33 years. Left a wife and 5 children.” which used to be fixed to a nearby cottage. “On Friday evening last, a person named Watts was at the Black Bull Inn [Mark], and there had some altercation with a named Larder .. the disputants went outside to have it out .. at a later hour, the man Watts was found by the bridge there in an insensible condition .. lingered till 11 a.m. the following morning, when he expired ..”

Dr Claver Morris recorded in his diary having crossed “Mark Steaning”, or stoned ford, in September 1724. The ford is described as “long, deep and dangerous” in Locke’s survey quoted in Collinson. The ford is shown on a C18 map about 50m to the E of the present bridge site (PRN 15028) , crossing a much wider river. The Badgworth churchwardens paid 5 shillings “towards Riteing Mark Stening” in 1743. In 1746 the ford was said to be jointly maintained by the parishes of Mark, Burnham, Berrow, Brean, Lympsham, East Brent, South Brent, Biddisham, Weare, Badgworth and Chapel Allerton.

References:   Somerset HER Ref:15028 and 15911