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Main Street, Horncliffe.jpg
Grid reference: NT925495
Location: 55°44’20"N, 2°7’16"W
Population: 374  (2001)
Post town: Berwick upon Tweed
Postcode: TD15
Local Government

Horncliffe is a small village in county of Northumberland, on the south bank of the River Tweed. It stands about 5 miles southwest of Berwick-upon-Tweed, and about 3 miles northeast of Norham.

Horncliffe claims to be the most northerly village in Northumberland, and indeed in England, which it is if East Ord and Tweedmouth, now absorbed by Berwick cannot be included in the tally.

The Union Bridge

Main article: Union Bridge (Tweed)

The Union Bridge

North of Horncliffe is the Union Chain Bridge across the River Tweed towards Fishwick in Berwickshire.

When the bridge opened in 1820 it was the longest wrought iron suspension bridge in the world with a span of 449 feet, and the first vehicular bridge of its type in United Kingdom. Although work started on the Menai Suspension Bridge first, Union Bridge was completed earlier. Today it is the oldest suspension bridge still carrying road traffic. It lies on Sustrans Route 1 and the Pennine Cycleway.

Before the opening of the Union Bridge, crossing the river at this point involved an 11-mile round trip by way of Berwick-upon-Tweed downstream or a 20-mile journey by way of Coldstream upstream. Later, in 1888, the Ladykirk and Norham Bridge opened upstream.

The bridge has been maintained by the Tweed Bridges Trust, since the abolition of turnpike tolls in 1883. It is a listed structure in both of the jurisdictions it joins; Category A in Scotland[1] and a Grade I in England. It is also a Scheduled Ancient Monument.

The bridge has been closed for traffic since 2008, which is likely to become a permanent closure, due to its declining condition.[2]

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Horncliffe)
("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Union Bridge)