The Dredge Bridge

Location: Caledon

dredge-bridgeIn 1839, the Earl of Caledon commissioned James Dredge to build two suspension bridges over the River Blackwater on his estate at Caledon – one sufficiently wide to take cattle and carts, (The Carriage Bridge),  close to Caledon House, and the other a footbridge, (The Dredge Bridge), located several miles downstream.  The bridge still spans the river.

The ‘Metal Bridge’ is a unique suspension bridge, the only surviving example in Northern Ireland of a 19th century wrought and cast-iron suspension-type footbridge which spans the River Blackwater.  It is unique in that the number of iron rods progressively diminishes towards the center of the bridge.  The bridge was previously situated further down the river at the Ford of Glenarb, providing access to the mill.  It was dismantled, refurbished and re-erected in its present location on the same river.

The bridge was restored by Dungannon District Council and re-opened by the current Earl of Caledon in 1991.  It can be seen clearly from the road travelling from Aughnacloy to Armagh, just after the village of Caledon.