Photos: Mark Stevenson

Mark’s History: Mystery of the canal bridge markings explained

27 May 2019

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Bridge 224A on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal near Armley Mills is a truss bridge that was originally built in 1846 for the Leeds and Bradford Railway, writes Mark Stevenson.

Bridges along the canal are numbered from the Liverpool end of the canal.

If, like 224A, they were built when the canal was finished they got a letter after the numbers.

Bridge 224A has more than just a number on it there are also mason marks still visible on buildings, for the most part, these mason marks would be hidden but on bridges, they were left visible.

The marks themselves may be the mason’s mark to show how much work he has done as most of his work was piece work.

A lot of the marks are repeated and you can see them as you walk under the bridge

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Geoff Dixon says:

Hi Mark,
just a note to inform you that if bridges on the L&L canal have a letter after the number it indicates that the bridge is not the responsibility of the Canal and River Trust as in the case of 224A which is owned and maintained by Network Rail.