The Iron Bridge glowing at night

Project iron bridge: saving an industrial icon

Stretching across the River Severn, the world's first iron bridge is one of the greatest symbols of the Industrial Revolution. But the Iron Bridge is now suffering from cracking and in need of repair.

To save the bridge for generations to come, English Heritage is embarking on its largest conservation project to date. #ProjectIronBridge

Help save the Iron Bridge

We are now undertaking a major conservation project on the Iron Bridge. The bridge is suffering due to stresses in its ironwork, and the project is vital to preserving it for the future.

Watch our video to learn more about how the campaign is going and what we're doing to save this important monument.

Donate today
Two workers inspecting the Iron Bridge

Target reached - thank you

Nearly 800 of you have so far rallied to save the bridge and we are hugely grateful to everyone for their generosity.

In response to your overwhelming support, we increased our Crowdfunder target to £40,000 to complete the final part of Project Iron Bridge. Incredibly, we’ve now reached that target. But we still need your help.

All donations beyond the target will go towards conserving the Iron Bridge, easing the pressure on English Heritage's conservation budget. This will allow us to spend more on protecting the other sites in our care, the majority of which like the Iron Bridge are free to visit. As a new charity, we rely more than ever before on the support of our visitors, members and donors.

Thank you for your support today and for securing the future of the Iron Bridge.

Support Project Iron Bridge and English Heritage by donating  via our Crowdfunder campaign today.

The Iron Bridge with scaffolding wrapped around it

Get Involved

We're working to safeguard the future of the Iron Bridge. Be a part of our biggest conservation project to date.

  • Make a donation towards the Iron Bridge via Crowdfunder. As a charity, we rely on your generous support to look after the historic sites in our care.  
  • Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to find out more about the work we are doing. #ProjectIronBridge
  • Join the team! From January 2018 you can sign up as an Iron Bridge volunteer, supporting visitors to understand the vital conservation work.

 Iron Bridge Timeline

1709Coal Territory

Abraham Darby, a former brass founder, discovered that coal from Coalbrookdale could be used to smelt iron. This enabled the economically viable mass production of cast iron. Kickstarting the Industrial Revolution, the foundry was producing large quantities of cast iron goods within a couple of years.

Coal smelting at Iron Bridge

1773Pritchard’s Wild Idea

Shrewsbury architect Thomas Pritchard had a bold idea. Capitalising on engineering expertise and new iron-casting techniques, he proposed the world's first iron bridge, to be cast and built by Abraham Darby's grandson, Abraham Darby III.  A strong and durable bridge, it would support the transportation of goods across the River Severn and cut down barge traffic.

Designs for an iron bridge at Coalbrookdale
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