This is the view from the upstream (Stratford) side of the Avon bridge. A footbridge had exisited at this spot for many years and town records list it as a wooden structure in the early 19th century. The footbridge shown here was the first substantial structure and was replaced with the present one using the same piers. Until the E & W Railway bridge was reused for the relief road the only vehicle crossing of the Avon was Hugh Clopton's road bridge about a mile upstream. The Stratford & Moreton Tramway which crossed the E & W line near the site of Clifford Sidings adjacent to the Birmingham - Oxford turnpike road (later A34) entered the town on the first ever multi arch brick viaduct built for railway use. It was never converted to road vehicle use due to its width and is now a footpath. Considering the political arguments and vested interests that dragged out through the fifties and sixties regarding the provision of a second Avon road crossing the town should be grateful that the railway that they chose to ignore for so long should have left them with such a useful legacy.
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