Tower Bridge Project

The restoration of Tower Bridge was recorded by Harris Digital Productions, who set up this website to show work in progress and updated information about the project.

Harris Digital Productions specialise in the recording of historic projects, by providing a digital record using high definition video, high resolution photography and if required, a dedicated website.

The £4 million cost of the works has been funded by Bridge House Estates, an ancient City trust that dates back to 1097 when medieval monks founded a charity that charged Londoners a toll for crossing London Bridge. The primary purpose of this trust was, and still is, to maintain all five City bridges (London, Tower, Southwark, Blackfriars and Millennium Bridge) at no cost to the taxpayer. The trust is now worth £700million and continues to give grants totalling millions every year to charities in Greater London.

  • 22,000 litres of paint was used on Tower Bridge
  • Tower Bridge retains its traditional blue and white colour
  • 1,500 tonnes of expendable abrasive was used to blast Tower Bridge back to its metal framework before repainting
  • 40,000 motorists and pedestrians cross Tower Bridge every day
  • The revolutionary new paint used will last for 25 years with a top – up every 12 years
  • Whole bridge sections were encapsulated to catch old paintwork as it falls, protecting Thames river life
  • As one of the world’s most iconic and internationally recognised landmarks, and arguably one of the most ambitious engineering projects of its age, the smart appearance and imposing grandeur of Tower Bridge resonates strongly with national pride.

In order to complete the huge task of repainting Tower Bridge, a rolling programme was implemented to repaint the bridge. The programme saw sections of the bridge, accounting for roughly 25% of the total structure, alternately shrouded in scaffolding over the next four years until the bridge is immaculately finished.

This section-by-section approach was essential so as not to disrupt road or river traffic too dramatically during the work. The bridge must be completely encapsulated in order to catch the old paintwork that must be blasted off the metal bridge framework before repainting can commence. The paint debris was collected on a shelf below the bridge which is vacuumed up daily and disposed of in an environmentally friendly manner.

Bridge Biography:

Tower Bridge – £4million facelift over three years
Tower Bridge has stood over the River Thames in London since 1894 and is one of the most recognisable landmarks in the world. It is the bridge of London you tend to see in movies and on advertising literature for London. Tower Bridge is the only bridge on the Thames which can be raised.

  • The bridge was officially opened on 30 June 1894 by the Prince of Wales, the future King Edward VII, and his wife, Alexandra of Denmark.
  • Tower Bridge is a combined bascule and suspension bridge, its proximity to the Tower of London gives it its name.
  • It is 60 meters long with towers that rise to a height of 43 meters. Its middle section can be raised to permit large vessels to pass the Tower Bridge. Massive engines raise the bridge sections, which weigh about 1000 tonnes each, in just over a minute.
  • The Bridge used to be raised about 50 times a day, but nowadays it is only raised around 1000 times a year
  • Tower Bridge is still a busy and vital crossing of the Thames: it is crossed by over 40,000 people (motorists and pedestrians) every day
  • The project was filmed and photographed by Harris Digital Productions