Blast, there goes the bridge

A newspaper account of the demolition of Upton railway bridge – date and source unknown.

Upton Railway Bridge, which took a year to build in 1881, was blown up in a split second today.

Upton Railway Bridge

Iron bars laid on the bridge to contain the explosion fly in the air as Upton Railway Bridge is demolished.

The 60ft. high bridge carrying the Wantage to Reading road over the Didcot to Newbury line was blown up by gelignite packed into it by employees of the Witney Stone Company, a subsidiary of Ameys.

To avoid blasts and fragment damage to the station house and bungalows on the other side of the bridge, chain-link fencing was laid on the bridge and tarpaulin sheets were hung over the parapet. Traffic is being diverted while a new section of road is being buil at a lower level.

Many Upton villagers turned out today to see the end of the bridge. One man said he used to do his courting under it after the last train from Newbury had passed. Two elderly brothers who used to lean over the bridge watching the trains go by didn’t come. “I don’t think they could bear it.” someone said.