The Tees Transporter Bridge is the world’s longest working transporter bridge and also an iconic symbol of Teesside’s industrial and engineering heritage. It’s the furthest downstream bridge across the northern England-based River Tee. It’s also known as the Middlesbrough Transporter Bridge and connects Middlesbrough post-industrial town, on the south bank, to a village called Port Clarence, which is situated on the north bank.
It’s a transporter bridge that carries ‘gondola’ or a travelling ‘car’, suspended from the bridge, and across the river in one and a half minutes. The gondola is capable of carrying 200 people, nine cars or six cars plus one minibus. The bridge is locally referred to as the Transporter.
In recent years, the Tees Transporter Bridge has emerged as one of the leading historic visitor attractions, and it’s one of the major sites in the United Kingdom for extreme sports including zip-slides, bungee jumps and abseils. The Transportes has an overall length of 259 metres or 851 feet (including cantilevers), which leaves a span between the towers centres of 180 metres (590 feet), and the bridge’s beam being carried at 49 metres (160 feet) in height above the road.
Currently, the bridge is owned by Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council and Middlesbrough Council. The Middlesbrough Council controls the daily operations and maintenance. In the years 2011, the Transporter received a 2.6 million-pound Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) award for improvement and upgrade work to mark the centenary of the Bridge.
The improvement works include renovation of the gondola and a glass viewing lift installation to the upper walkway of the landmark. On 27 August 2013, the bridge was closed for a 40-day repainting. Then it was discovered that there were some repairs needed. On 6 April 2015, the Transporter was re-opened for traffic. The “improvement works” are being worked.
On 5 March 2015, the postal service and courier firm called the Royal Mail plc issued a set of ten First Class postage stamps that feature iconic bridges in Britain, which included the Tees Transporter Bridge.
Also, the Tees Transporter Bridge is host to a vintage bus running day, which is organised every year by The 500 Group. Generally, on this day, which takes place once every year and often Sunday in the month of April, vintage buses will take people on rides around Teesside without paying anything.
As part of the events that took place in 2006 and 2007, the Transporter made a special trip and carried former Daimler Fleetline from Teesside Municipal Transport. This was the first time ever a double-decker bus used the bridge in three decades. The bridge is also one of the Grade II* Listed Buildings, and other elements, like its gates, railings, piers and Winch House, are Grade II listed.
The Riverside Stadium is next on our top sights to see in Middlesbrough list.