Radley Street Bridge

The current Radley Street bridge.

You are standing on what is the second Radley Bridge on this site, built in 1930.  These days we take bridges for granted but before bridges were built, rivers like the Ōpāwaho Heathcote were major impediments to movement.

Radley Swing Bridge -1927 (photo Christchurch City Council)

In 1880 there was no bridge and local resident Mrs Peel (formerly Mrs Kent, and Laura Kent’s mother) of Radley Farm, offered to pay most of the costs of the first bridge on this site.  The iron bridge was locally built by  Anderson Bros who had established a local foundry and cost 675 pounds.   It was a swing bridge, pivoted from a pier at one-third span, to allow small boats to access Christchurch Quay.  Modern vehicles may have struggled to cross it, as it was only 3.66m wide!  The opening was reported by the Lyttelton Times on 25th October 1881 as you can hear …

Take a moment to savour the view downstream.  Thank you Mrs Peel for your foresight and commitment to do something for your community!

Follow the river on the left bank downstream about 120m to find the next marker next to a seat.