Place:Wadebridge, Cornwall, England

Watchers
NameWadebridge
Alt namesPonsryssource: Wikipedia
TypeTown
Coordinates50.533°N 4.833°W
Located inCornwall, England
See alsoEgloshayle, Cornwall, Englandparish from which Wadebridge was formed in 1898
St. Breock, Cornwall, Englandparish from which Wadebridge was formed in 1898
Wadebridge Rural, Cornwall, Englandrural district of which it was part 1934-1968
Wadebridge and Padstow Rural, Cornwall, Englandrural district of which it was part 1968-1974
Bodmin Registration District, Cornwall, Englandregistration district of which it was part 1898-2007
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog
the following text is based on an article in Wikipedia

Wadebridge is a town and civil parish in Cornwall, England. The town straddles the River Camel upstream (south) from Padstow. The permanent population according to the UK Census of 2001 was 6,222.

Originally known as Wade, it was a dangerous fording point across the river until a bridge was built here in the 15th century, after which the name changed to its present form. The bridge was strategically important during the English Civil War, and Oliver Cromwell went there to take it. Since then, it has been widened twice and refurbished in 1991.

Administratively, Wadebridge was formed from parts of the civil parishes of Egloshayle and St. Breock in 1898 when it became an urban district. In 1934 the urban district was abolished and Wadebridge became part of the newly formed Wadebridge Rural District. This was expanded and became Wadebridge and Padstow Rural District from 1968 until 1974.

Contents

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

The initial settlement of Wade (the name of Wadebridge before the bridge was built) came about due to a ford in the River Camel (Camel probably meaning "crooked one"). The early crossing had a chapel on each side of the river, "Kings" chapel on the north side and "St Michael's" on the south side. People would pray for a safe crossing at one of the chapels before wading across at low tide, once they had made it the other side they would give thanks to God in the other chapel. In 1312 a licence was granted for a market at Wade. The Reverend Thomas Lovibond (the vicar of Egloshayle) became distressed at the number of humans and animals that died during the crossing of the river Camel so he planned the building of a bridge which was completed in 1468. Wade was now known as Wadebridge.

The bridge was a strategic position in the English Civil War as in 1646 Oliver Cromwell came with 500 Dragoons and 1000 horsemen to take the bridge.[1] When the bridge was first completed tolls were charged for its maintenance. In 1853 it was widened from . A second widening took place in 1963 taking it to . In 1994 the bridge underwent a refurbishment to change the stone in the pavement and to create a cycle track.

A serious outbreak of typhoid in 1897 caused by contamination of drinking water led to Wadebridge having its own town council as decisive action had to be taken for proper water supplies and disposal of sewage effluent.

Railway

The Bodmin and Wadebridge Railway from Wadebridge to Wenfordbridge with a branch line to Bodmin was built at a cost of £35,000 following a study commissioned in 1831 by local landowner Sir William Molesworth of Pencarrow. The line was intended to carry sand from the Camel Estuary to inland farms for use as fertiliser. It was opened on 30 September 1834 with the locomotive Camel pulling a train load of 400 passengers (one of the first railways in Britain to carry passengers). When the company ordered its second locomotive it came with a name plate already affixed. It had been named the Elephant as the makers had failed to realise that the first engine had been named after the river and not an animal!

The last passenger train left Wadebridge railway station in 1967 following railway cut backs. The railway has been transformed into the Camel Trail, and the Bodmin and Wenford Railway heritage railway runs on part of the route.

Eddystone Road

In 1877, after cracks appeared in the rock on which the Eddystone Lighthouse was positioned, a new lighthouse was commissioned from James Nicholas Douglass. Granite quarried from De Lank quarry was brought down to Wadebridge where stonemasons dovetailed each segment of stone not only to each other but also to the course above and below. As each layer was completed and checked to fit with the layer above, it was sent out to the Eddystone rocks by sea. The lighthouse was completed in 1882. This resulted in the road where the masons worked being called Eddystone Road.

Historical timeline

  • 1312 — Licence granted for Wade to hold a market.
  • 1460 — Reverend Thomas Lovibond commenced building the bridge.
  • 1646 — Oliver Cromwell and his men descended onto Wadebridge to take control of the bridge.
  • 1793 — A shipping canal from Wadebridge to Fowey was surveyed.
  • 1834 — The Bodmin and Wadebridge Railway took its first passengers.
  • 1845 — The Bodmin and Wadebridge Railway became part of the London and South Western Railway
  • 1852 — The Bridge was widened from 3 m to 5 m.
  • 1882 — Work began on replacing the Eddystone lighthouse.
  • 1888 — The Town Hall (then known as the Molesworth Hall) was completed.
  • 1888 — The Bodmin and Wadebridge railway was connected to the Great Western Railway.
  • 1894 — Wadebridge Town Football Club was founded.
  • 1895 — The London and South Western Railway, reached Wadebridge from Halwill Junction and Launceston.
  • 1897 — A serious outbreak of typhoid in the town led to better water supplies.
  • 1899 — The Bodmin and Wadebridge railway was extended to Padstow.
  • 1930 — The Cinedrome (now the Regal) opened to its first customers.
  • 1955 — Wadebridge Camels RFC was founded.
  • 1960 — Wadebridge was chosen as the permanent site of the Royal Cornwall Agricultural Show.
  • 1963 — The Bridge was widened from 5m to 12m.
  • 1967 — The railway line was closed to passengers.
  • 1991 — The Challenge Bridge was completed.
  • 1993 — The Wadebridge Bypass was completed.

Research Tips

One of the many maps available on A Vision of Britain through Time is one from the Ordnance Survey Series of 1900 illustrating the parish boundaries of Cornwall at the turn of the 20th century. This map blows up to show all the parishes and many of the small villages and hamlets.

The following websites have pages explaining their provisions in WeRelate's Repository Section. Some provide free online databases.

  • GENUKI makes a great many suggestions as to other websites with worthwhile information about Cornwall as well as providing 19th century descriptions of each of the ecclesiastical parishes.
  • FamilySearch Wiki provides a similar information service to GENUKI which may be more up-to-date.
  • A Vision of Britain through Time has
  1. organization charts of the hierarchies of parishes within hundreds, registration districts and rural and urban districts of the 20th century
  2. excerpts from a gazetteer of circa 1870 outlining individual towns and parishes
  3. reviews of population through the time period 1800-1960
  • More local sources can often be found by referring to "What Links Here" in the column on the left.


This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original content was at Wadebridge. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WeRelate, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.