Menai Bridge Timeline

On this page you can see a timeline of the Menai bridge. Scroll through the timeline to find out about the key dates in the Menai Bridge’s History.

1282
Edward I first built a bridge across the Strait (using boats)
1594
Queen Elizabeth leases ferry to John Williams, whose family would
run a ferry across the Strait until the bridge was completed.
1776
Mr Goldborne proposed the first bridge across the Strait.
1800
Mr Nichols suggests that a wooden viaduct with drawbridge at the
centre should be build close to Cadnant Island.
1801
John Rennie was commissioned to inspect favourable harbour sites
for crossing to Ireland. He also prepared initial plans for a
bridge across the Straits – the war with Napoleon stopped
this.
1810
Thomas Telford appointed to report on London to Holyhead road, he
proposed 2 bridge designs over the Strait – bridge on piers and a
single arch bridge. Objection led to the suggestion of a suspension
bridge across Swellies at Pig Island.
1815
Telford appointed to build a bridge over the Menai Strait.
1818
Telford formally submits a plan for suspension bridge.
14th Aug 1818
A meeting was held in Caernarfon among local gentry and businesses
to raise opposition to the bridge as the bridge was over 7 miles
away from their town and would effect their businesses.
1819
Act of Parliament authorized Telford to begin work on Suspension
Bridge. The first stone was laid on 10th August.
1824
The main stonework on the bridge was completed.
20th Apr 1825
The first chain was lifted into position.
30th Jan 1826
The completed bridge was opened for the first time to
traffic.
1938
Dorman Long was commissioned to modernize and strengthen the bridge
– arches on carriage way were widened, suspender rods and chains
were replaced and a new deck was constructed with footpaths on
either side of the bridge..
31st Dec 1940
The restoration work was completed and the toll for crossing the
bridge was dropped.
1999
Major repair works were completed to strengthen the road
deck.
2005
The bridge was repainted fully for the first time since 1940.
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