Martham Ferry :: Shared Description

The only access onto Heigham Holmes, an isolated marsh since 1987 owned by the National Trust, is via a floating bridge over the River Thurne. Before the first pontoon bridge was constructed in the 19th century, the river had to be crossed by boat.

The first "ferry" is described as having been a large raft which required three people to operate it. In 1926, the farmers who owned land on this man-made island decided to improve their access and on 7 September signed a document which declared that "Each proprietor shall forthwith on signing this agreement pay to an account to be called the Martham Holmes Floating Bridge Account a sum proportionate to his or her acreage of such amount as may be required to provide a floating caisson bridge with all necessary fittings, gear and appliances."

In 1987 a new bridge, operated by pulling on a chain, was constructed. Like the caisson bridge it replaced, it had to be left open so as not to obstruct river traffic and it was for this reason necessary to row back to the other side after crossing over, in a boat provided for this purpose, to re-open it, and then to row across the river once again before the journey could be resumed.

The latest incarnation is an automated floating bridge which was installed in 2012. It has a tank beneath it which is filled with water. The weight lowers it to the level of the road and it can now be crossed > LinkExternal link . To open it, the water is pumped out, the bridge rises > LinkExternal link - LinkExternal link and can then be swung sideways > LinkExternal link - to let boats pass >LinkExternal link - LinkExternal link - LinkExternal link - LinkExternal link .

For a view of the old bridge which dated from 1987 see > LinkExternal link.

Although there are no records of a commercial ferry ever having operated here this river crossing has always been known as Martham Ferry.
by Evelyn Simak
Related descriptions Selection is automatic and approximate, it might not always select closely matching descriptions

13 images use this description:

TG4419 : The new bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The new bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The new bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The end of the road at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The new bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The new bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The new bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The River Thurne by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The new bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : Boat passing the new floating bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The new bridge at Martham Ferry by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : Hand-operated swing bridge across the River Thurne by Evelyn Simak
TG4419 : The new floating bridge at Martham Ferry by Adrian S Pye


These Shared Descriptions are common to multiple images. For example, you can create a generic description for an object shown in a photo, and reuse the description on all photos of the object. All descriptions are public and shared between contributors, i.e. you can reuse a description created by others, just as they can use yours.
Created: Sun, 2 Aug 2015, Updated: Thu, 3 Sep 2015

The 'Shared Description' text on this page is Copyright 2015 Evelyn Simak, however it is specifically licensed so that contributors can reuse it on their own images without restriction.

You are not logged in login | register