Multi-span bridge known as Respryn Bridge


Heritage Category: Scheduled Monument

List Entry Number: 1006701

Date first listed: 26-Nov-1928

Location Description: Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


Ordnance survey map of Multi-span bridge known as Respryn Bridge
© Crown Copyright and database right 2018. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2018. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1006701 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 11-Dec-2018 at 14:04:21.


Location Description: Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

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

District: Cornwall (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Lanhydrock

District: Cornwall (Unitary Authority)

Parish: St. Winnow

National Grid Reference: SX 09935 63493


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Multi-span bridges are structures of two or more arches supported on piers. They were constructed throughout the medieval period for the use of pedestrians and packhorse or vehicular traffic, crossing rivers or streams, often replacing or supplementing earlier fords. During the early medieval period timber was used, but from the 12th century stone (and later brick) bridges became more common, with the piers sometimes supported by a timber raft. Most stone or brick bridges were constructed with pointed arches, although semicircular and segmental examples are also known. The bridge abutments and revetting of the river banks also form part of the bridge. Where medieval bridges have been altered in later centuries, original features are sometimes concealed behind later stonework, including remains of earlier timber bridges. The roadway was often originally cobbled or gravelled. The building and maintenance of bridges was frequently carried out by the church and by guilds, although landowners were also required to maintain bridges. From the mid-13th century the right to collect tolls, known as pontage, was granted to many bridges, usually for repairs; for this purpose many urban bridges had houses or chapels on them, and some were fortified with a defensive gateway. The multi-span bridge known as Respryn Bridge has early references and was of strategic importance over a considerable period of time. Its clear signs of constant repair and re-development highlight its important history for communication, transportation and social significance.


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


The monument includes a multi-span bridge, crossing the River Fowey to the east of Lanhydrock House. The bridge survives as five-arched structure with the arches being of differing sizes, shapes and dates. The eastern arch is round-headed and dates to the 16th or 17th century; the second, of similar date, is wider and segmental. The central arch appears to be 15th century and is asymmetrical whilst the fourth and fifth arches are wider, constructed of coursed and dressed stone, and date to the 19th century. The bridge has four triangular refuges above the cutwaters on the upstream side, whilst on the downstream side there are only two refuges with cutwaters. The parapet walls are low with chamfered granite coping. The bridge measures approximately 40m long and 3m wide. The pass at Respryn was one of the most strategically important in Cornwall and the name 'Res' refers to a ford which presumably predated the bridge itself. The earliest reference to a bridge here was in 1300, and there are charters of the 12th century which refer to the Chapel of St Martin standing at 'Richbrene'. Chapels were commonly associated with bridges as a means to collect taxes to pay for the upkeep of the bridge. Respryn Bridge was guarded by Royalists at the outbreak of the Civil War and played an important part in the Siege of Lostwithiel in 1644. The bridge is Listed Grade II* (60642 and 67543). It lies within the registered park of Lanhydrock (1417).

Sources: HER:- PastScape Monument No:-431472


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

Legacy System number: CO 63

Legacy System: RSM - OCN

End of official listing