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Smith's Bridge

A Grade II* Listed Building in Bradford Abbas, Dorset

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Latitude: 50.9243 / 50°55'27"N

Longitude: -2.5852 / 2°35'6"W

OS Eastings: 358963

OS Northings: 114032

OS Grid: ST589140

Mapcode National: GBR MR.Q0TN

Mapcode Global: FRA 56GN.QN3

Entry Name: Smith's Bridge

Listing Date: 11 July 1951

Last Amended: 30 June 2015

Grade: II*

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1119407

English Heritage Legacy ID: 105541

Location: Clifton Maybank, West Dorset, Dorset, DT9

County: Dorset

District: West Dorset

Civil Parish: Bradford Abbas

Traditional County: Dorset

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Dorset

Church of England Parish: Bradford Abbas with Clifton Maybank St Mary the Virgin

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury

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Bradford Abbas


A road bridge over the River Yeo, built in the later C16, with the north-west parapet being rebuilt in 1972 and again in 2009 after being demolished by vehicle strikes.


A road bridge, built in the later C16, with the north-west parapet being rebuilt in 1972 and again in 2009 after being demolished by vehicle strikes.

MATERIALS: of limestone ashlar.

DESCRIPTION: the bridge is aligned north-east to south-west and has two, four-centered arches with chamfered voussoirs which die into the abutments and central pier. The north-west (upstream) and south-east (downstream) sides both have a central, triangular-shaped cutwater. At road level there is an oversailing course surmounted by low parapet walls which is in turn surmounted by a wrought-iron railing. The coping stones are held together by wrought-iron clamps set in lead.


Smith's Bridge stands to the south of Bradford Abbas and carries a narrow, sunken road across the River Yeo. Although the bridge is mentioned in the ‘Itinerary of John Leland in or About the Years 1535-1543’, the present structure was probably built in the later C16. In 1972 the whole of the north-west parapet was demolished by a vehicle strike and subsequently rebuilt using the original stones. The north-west parapet was again demolished by a vehicle strike in 2009 and rebuilt using a mixture of original and new stones.

Reasons for Listing

Smith’s Bridge, a multi-span road bridge of the late C16, with the north-west parapet being rebuilt in 1972 and 2009, is listed at Grade II* for the following principal reasons:

* Architectural interest: as an enduring construction of a simple design, with good-quality materials and detailing;
* Date: as an important example of a Tudor road bridge;
* Survival: Smith's Bridge survives in its original form, and retains its original masonry and features;
* Historic interest: as a surviving testament to the evolution of road transport during the Tudor period.

Selected Sources

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