Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
Builth and district
in Victorian times
  The bridge over the Wye  

Like many of the oldest towns in the land, Builth was created around an important river crossing. Travellers between North and South Wales had to cross the River Wye, where the bridge linked Breconshire and Radnorshire.
There were a number of much earlier wooden bridges over the river at Builth. The stone bridge over the river, with six arches, was first built in 1779 by James Parry of Hay. This engraving of Builth Bridge was made in 1836, just one year before Queen Victoria was crowned.

The town of
Builth is on the
Breconshire side
of the River Wye.
Builth Bridge,1836 To Llanelwedd

This view is from the north-east of the town, and downstream from the bridge. Llanelwedd lies over the bridge to the right, and the main part of the town of Builth lies at the centre of the picture beyond the arches of the bridge.
This picture was made before the building of the Market Hall, which is now the Wyeside Arts Centre. It was built at the end of the Breconshire side of the bridge (left) in 1877. The bridge is shown from the upstream side after the Market Hall was built in another picture in this series.
The bridge was originally only wide enough to take a horse-drawn cart, but it was widened to take two lanes of traffic in 1925.

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