30 November 2015

Panmure celebrates 150 years of engineering heritage

  • Tamaki River Bridge swing span’s circular rail.
  • Remains of the bridge swing span, now integrated into the Panmure Bridge Marine building.
  • Auckland Mayor Len Brown speaking at the event.
  • Remains of the hand-operated circular rail winch.

This year marks 150 years since the first swing span bridge in the North Island, Panmure’s Tamaki River Bridge, was opened.

Members of IPENZ’s Auckland Branch, Auckland Heritage Chapter and the Heritage Board gathered at Panmure in October to celebrate the bridge’s anniversary.

Auckland Mayor Len Brown and Councillor Mike Lee talked about the importance of preserving heritage and the history of the bridge. Local historian Alan La Roche talked about the historical events of 1865.

In 1865 roads were particularly bad so transport of goods by water was far more efficient. Bridges across important waterways such as the Tamaki River at Panmure had to allow for shipping to pass. The kauri timber bridge was 640 feet (195m) long with a wrought iron opening swing span of 40 feet (12m) wide at the eastern side. Much of the original wrought iron swing span remains. Although it was in a much corroded state, it has recently been cleaned and painted.

Find out more about the history of the bridge