Old Red Iron is the local name given to this bridge which spans the river Suir in Waterford. Originally built in 1906, it was part of the route which linked Cork and Kerry to Rosslare via Waterford. The bridge has 9 spans and the central part could open for shipping however it has been subsequently removed. The removed section is now located a couple of hundred metres downstream on the shoreline.
With a length of 1205ft, the bridge was once one of the longest in the country and today is not far from Ireland’s longest bridge, the River Suir Bridge which opened in 2009 and is 230 metres. It’s also 112 metres high.
The line was originally used as a faster route for mail between the transatlantic port of Cobh and London via Rosslare however it closed in 1967 only to reopen again 1970 to service the mineral processing plant near Dungarvan. The Waterford to Dungarvan line was used until 1987 when it was closed to the public. It was abandoned in 1995 and by 2003, the central section and the track was removed.
The bridge was used briefly to connect Waterford South Station located near Bilberry to the north side of the river Suir before it closed in 1908 and from there on was used to transport goods to Waterford Stanley and Cherry’s Brewery in Bilberry. Part of the route south of the river Suir has been maintained as a tourist attraction by Waterford & Suir Valley Railway.
The piece of the bridge which was removed can be seen in the map below.
Location: Waterford, Ireland
Category: Railway Bridge