The Chain Bridge was built c.1817, across the river Dee from Llantysilio to Berwyn, by
Exuperius Pickering, a local entrepreneur dealing in coal, limestone, slate and iron bar.
Built to allow access to Telford’s new road to Holyhead, Pickering’s bridge was constructed
with wooden decking, supported by wrought iron chains from below with a surface covering of earth and stone.
The bridge was supported from the river bed by six oak pillars. Detailed survey drawings were carried out
by French engineer (and industrial spy), Joseph-Michel Dutens and published in Mémoires sur les Travaux Publics d’Angleterre, 1819
with a report that concluded, ‘One cannot assign a limit to the genius...there exist in London examples of chain bridges but the concept of the Dee is preferable’.
The bridge is now owned jointly by Llangollen and Llantysilio councils and has just been restored.
More information: www.llangollenmuseum.org.uk
The project now has its own Facebook (Chain Bridge Project)
and Twitter @chainbridge2014