Skerne Railway bridge, 320m south east of Darlington Railway Museum


Heritage Category:
Scheduled Monument
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Location Description:
Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.
Darlington (Unitary Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:
NZ 29177 15558

Reasons for Designation

The development of railway bridges is linked closely with the inception and growth of the railway transport network, which began with the opening of the Stockton and Darlington Railway in 1825 followed by rapid expansion throughout the 19th century and early 20th century. The development of the rail network required the preparation of straight, flat routes and necessitated the crossing of widely varied terrain through a series of engineering works including tunnels, cuttings, embankments, bridges and viaducts. As an integral part of the railway network, bridges are representative of a technological and engineering phenomenon that was initiated in Britain and allowed the industrial revolution to flourish permanently transforming the socioeconomic status of the country. As such, early, well-preserved or architecturally outstanding examples of railway bridges are deemed to be of national importance.

Despite the fact that it has been widened, Skerne Railway Bridge is reasonably well preserved. It is highly significant as an integral element of the original Stockton to Darlington railway line which opened in 1825. This early pioneering phase of the development of the railways has significance on a world-wide scale. Skerne Bridge is considered to be one of the first ever railway bridges remains as the oldest railway bridge in the world still in use. The importance of the monument is enhanced by the significance of its designer Ignatius Bonomi, one of the first ever railway architects.


The monument includes a railway bridge, designed in 1824, spanning the River Skerne in the centre of Darlington. The single span bridge is constructed of sandstone and comprises a large central arch with curving wing walls containing smaller pedestrian arches,. The south side of the bridge retains its parapet, but the north side has been widened. The bridge was designed by Ignatius Bonomi in order to carry the Stockton and Darlington railway across the River Skerne.

This list entry was subject to a Minor Amendment on 23/08/2011

SOURCES PastScape Monument No:-1010231 NMR:- NZ21NE13


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
DA 87
Legacy System:


This monument is scheduled under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 as amended as it appears to the Secretary of State to be of national importance. This entry is a copy, the original is held by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

End of official listing

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