Record Details

NHER Number:13765
Type of record:Monument
Name:Lenwade bridge


At least four successive bridges have been constructed at this location in Lenwade. A triple-arched bridge was built over the River Wensum in 1741, replacing an earlier one. In the 1920s a third bridge was constructed adjacent to the 1741 structure and the two stood next to each other until 1954 when the 18th century bridge was demolished. In the 1940's a World War Two a tank trap was installed on the bridge. The 1920's bridge, the remaining abutment of the 18th century bridge, and all but one block of the tank trap were demolished during the construction of a new bridge in 1992.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TG 1025 1826
Map Sheet:TG11NW

Full description

1741. Documentary Evidence.
T. Martin (S1) noted that Lenwade bridge was rebuilt in 1741 for 320 pounds. The new bridge consisted of three arches on low cutwaters.

1978. Field Observation.
A tank trap was identified at the northeast corner of the present bridge. The tank trap consists of two concrete columns standing on the abutment of the 18th century Lenwade Bridge that was demolished in 1927 (it is now known that this was not demolished until 1954, see below). 19th century brick with a shaped pointed stone cutwater edge was identified. The cutwater edge could be much older than 19th century. Additional brick remains on the west bank and in the bed of the stream as well. The 'Bridge Inn' sign shows a 3 arch bridge of the type that was built at all periods from 16th to 19th centuries.
E. Rose (NAU) 14 June 1978.

1991/1992. Field Observation.
The tank obstacle was removed at the same time as the demolition of the current (1920's) bridge. A temporary bridge has been constructed on the site of the pre-1920's bridge which will be used until the new bridge is completed.
E. Rose (NLA), 2 March 1992

1992. Field Observation.
Construction of a new bridge in 1992 has destroyed the old abutment and the tank trap as well as the 1920s bridge. Despite the construction of the latter, the 18th century bridge remained in place until 1954, as shown by a photograph (S3) in the secondary file.
E. Rose (NLA), 5 May 1992

1992. Field Observation/Find.
During the massive excavations for the new bridge large wooden piles were recovered from the west side of the old bridge. These piles measured 30cm (1 foot) in diameter and 6ft long and had pointed tips reinforced by an iron sleeve on two sides, terminating in a long spike. Seven of these were recovered by source, although these represent just a few of many found and removed by local residents for their woodburners.
See sketch (S4).
D. Gurney (NLA), 16 June 1997.

March 1994. Field Observation.
A survey of the tank trap revealed that one block remained in 1994, which was covered in ivy. This block was once part of a common 1940 anti-tank block. Once a substantial road-block, all blocks but one were demolished for the new bridge.
See (S2) in secondary file. Norfolk Defensive Structures Survey No. L2-3.
D. Walker (NLA) July 1996.

NGR corrected from original (TG 1022 1823).
M. Horlock (NLA), 24 March 2003.

Monument Types

  • FINDSPOT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)
  • BRIDGE (18th Century to Mid 20th Century - 1741 AD to 1954 AD)
  • BRIDGE (Early 20th Century to Cold War - 1920 AD to 1992 AD)
  • PILE (Early 20th Century to Cold War - 1920 AD? to 1992 AD)
  • TANK TRAP (World War Two to 21st Century - 1939 AD to 2100 AD)

Associated Finds

  • FERRULE (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Monograph: Pevsner, N and Wilson, W. 1999. Norfolk 2: North-West and South. The Buildings of England. 2nd Edition. p 516.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
<S1>Documentary Source: Martin, T. c. 1700-1799. Collections of Church Notes. Norfolk Records Office. c. 1740.
<S2>Recording Form: [various]. Norfolk Defensive Structures Survey Recording Form. Norfolk Defensive Structures Survey.
<S3>Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 1992. Lifespan of old bridge. 5 May.
<S4>Illustration: Gurney, D. 1992. Sketch of an iron sleeve/spike. Paper. Not to scale.

Related records - none

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