Bridge on former Rother Navigation (at SU 98291882)

Overview

Heritage Category:
Listed Building
Grade:
II
List Entry Number:
1392320
Date first listed:
13-Nov-2007
Statutory Address:
Bridge on former Rother Navigation (at SU 98291882)

Map

Ordnance survey map of Bridge on former Rother Navigation (at SU 98291882)
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
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Location

Statutory Address:
Bridge on former Rother Navigation (at SU 98291882)

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

County:
West Sussex
District:
Chichester (District Authority)
Parish:
Sutton
National Park:
SOUTH DOWNS
National Grid Reference:
SU 98290 18828

Reasons for Designation

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION DECISION The Bridge at Shopham, Sutton is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons: * The bridge, dating to the late 1790s, is in original condition with some minor repairs * The bridge is of architectural interest in the context of both the Rother Navigation and the wider Sussex canal network * The bridge is of historic interest as part of the national waterways system of the late C18

Details

427/0/10033

SUTTON Bridge on former Rother Navigation (at SU 98291882)

13-NOV-07

II DESCRIPTION: A canal bridge dating to the 1790s of red and grey brick. This is a single round-headed arched bridge with a parapet which has a cement coping. Each end of each parapet terminates in a brick pier which also has a cement coping. The red and grey brick are random patterned in English Bond. The arch is formed by ashlar quoins supporting an arch of vertical bricks, above which are two courses of stretcher bond followed by two offset courses of header bond.

HISTORY: It was recognised in the C18 that an alternative means of transport was needed in Sussex as the roads were notoriously bad; timber from the Weald could take up to three years to reach the shipyards. The rivers of Sussex have long been used for transport. The River Arun's lower reaches have been used for navigation since the C11, and during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I the Arun was made navigable from Littlehampton to its junction with the River Rother. Also the traditional sinuous routes of some of the county's rivers were straightened in the C16 to make them navigable. Further improvements were made in the late C18 and early C19 by building artificial cuts with locks and canals.

The canals and canalised waterways of Sussex were not comparable in size and importance with those of the Midlands and the North of England, but they were a significant part of the county's transport system for 300 years. The waterways were at their zenith in the 1830s, but the advent of the railways across West Sussex in the mid-C19 brought competition which was ultimately to sound the death knell of water-borne transport on a commercial basis. The Chichester & Arundel section of the Portsmouth & Arundel Canal was the first to become derelict in the 1850s and by 1900 only the occasional barge was present on the river and canal system.

The River Rother between Midhurst and the point where it meets the River Arun Navigation was known as the Rother Navigation, and was built between 1791 and 1795 by the third Earl of Egremont so that coal could be taken to Midhurst and Petworth, and corn and timber could be exported from the area. The line of the canal was surveyed by William Jessop and for the most part it followed the natural course of the river. It had only 2 miles of artificial cuts along its total 11 ¼ mile length, and rose by 54ft with the aid of 8 locks. When the railway to Midhurst was completed in 1866 the fortune of the Rother Navigation started to decline, although it did remain in commercial use until March 1888.

The bridge at Shopham which is the subject of this listing lies adjacent to Shopham Lock, and is close to the point where the Petworth Canal, a canalised stream which had only two locks, leaves the Rother Navigation on its route to Haslingbourne Bridge. The bridge, both by form of brick and design, can be attributed to the period of canal construction. This bridge is shown on an Ordnance Survey map published in 1880.

SOURCES: P A L Vine, West Sussex Waterways (1985) P A L Vine, London's Lost Route To Midhurst The Earl of Egremont's Navigation (1995)

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION DECISION The Bridge at Shopham, Sutton is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons: * The bridge, dating to the 1790s, is in original condition with some minor repairs * The bridge is of architectural interest in the context of both the Rother Navigation and the wider Sussex canal network * The bridge is of historic interest as part of the national waterways system of the late C18

Legacy

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

Legacy System number:
503085
Legacy System:
LBS

Legal

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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