Continuation blog : What went wrong?


At 2100 yesterday, as fbb was finishing yesterday’s outpouring of his creative spirit (well, writing a blog!), it all vanished, never to be seen again. This has happened several times before and it is a combination of fbb’s uncontrolled finger prodding and the Blogger software which backs things up automatically.

Somehow, when selecting a picture to delete, Blogger decides to select the whole blog. O.K., it may be something fbb is pressing in his late evening weariness – but he doesn’t know what.

Blogger instantly backs up the empty page and there it is – GONE

fbb had time to rewrite part of his intended magnum opus before the eyelids began to droop and bed was essential.

Isn’t technology wonderful?


We Are Moving East …

Yesterday, before the arrival of the gremlins …
… fbb looked at the Wallasey Road Bridge and the Duke Street Bridge. The Wallasey road is the A5088 and Duke Street is part of the A5027. 
And for the A5088, a correction is needed. Some sources suggested that the replacement bridge there …
… was a fixed link instead of the earlier swing bridge. WRONG!

The new bridge was built to swing and you can see the joins in the roadway …

… and footpath.

Indeed, by turning up the brightness on Google Earth, you can see the arc of the swing mechanism …

… in the foetid waters of a very non-limpid pool! As far as fbb can tell, the bridge never swung!

But now we move on to the GREEN trunk road, the A554, for Tower Road Bridge.

The Open Streetmap map (above) tells us that the bridge is on Canning Road, but everyone else thinks it is on Tower Road – there is a clue in the bridge’s name! 

Or is there?
To add to the joy and delight of an aged blogger, the official name of this crossing facility is the A Bridge.
Now the more observant of fbb’s readers will spot a two-way entrance to the East Float; both ways of which would have required bridges.
We have pictures of the A Bridge or Tower Road Bridge …

… sometimes erroneously called the C Bridge in on-line articles. 

The other lane, for exit by shipping (right hand running for floaty things!) was called the C Bridge
fbb can find no reference to a B Brldge!
C was also a bascule bridge and can sometimes be called the A Bridge by some caption writers.
fbb can find no picture of the lifting C Bridge which was replaced by a fixed girder structure some years ago …

… but this has now been removed …

…  and replaced by …

… a rather boring fixed roadway. 

But, at last, not far from the non bridge is our old friend the mystery tower.

It has lost its flamboyant decorated pointy bit …

… and it is now in need of restoration but it is the sane tower. The good news is that restoration is on its way and the whole site is being repurposed and brought back into public use.
It was designed by J. B. Hartley to provide the necessary power to move the bridges and lock gates at the adjacent Birkenhead Docks. The building design was based on the Palazzo Vecchio town hall situated in the Piazza della Signoria, Florence, Italy. It is planned to be used as a Maritime Knowledge Hub as part of the Wirral Waters development scheme.
In word-use terms it is one of these.

Although we would call it a battery today, back then it was known as an accumulator – because it accumulated power which was then used to dribble out and make, say, an old sit-up-and-beg radio perform its electronic miracles.

Of course, the tower did not accumulate electricity but it did accumulate water. Because it was tall, the tank at the top would deliver water at pressure to work lock gates and – tada – bascule bridges.
The bridges are now pumped hydraulically and the tower is no longer in use.

Yep! Needs a few bob spending on it!!

Indeed as the C Bridge on Tower Road (yes, that Tower!) was removed, the A Bridge was replaced. It was towed in on a barge, a fully assembled chunk of steelwork …

… plonked in place on its substantial bearings and coupled to two massive hydraulic rams.


Finally we go to the bridge on the yellow side road, closest to the River Mersey. 
This is Egerton Bridge on Egerton Wharf – a sort of siding off the main channel.

It has been restored mechanically but no longer opens. There are no ships to pass beneath.

But, fbb, you have been prattling on about FOUR bridges; surely your esteemed readership will have counted FIVE including the TWO on Tower Road.
Do we get an explanation? Or is the fbb mathematical mind as degenerate as the rest of him?
 Next Birkenhead Bridges blog : Thursday 25th Jan 
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