community news

ROMAN BRIDGE (too far?)

The Roman Bridge

In Mayals Ward there is a secret treasure which is known to the residents of Blackpill, but is fast disappearing.  It is called “The Roman Bridge” except it isn’t Roman!  The earliest reference has been found by the local Historian Wendy Cope.  I quote from her article written in 2002 and is to be found in Volume 53 of the Gower Journal held in the Swansea library.

“The bridge at Blackpill also needed attention from time to time.  In 1681 the surveyors reported that:

… a certain common bridge over a certain river called Blackpill river, as much of the said bridge as lyeth in the parish of Oystermouth within the said manor, is out of repair to the common annoyance of His Majesty’s people passing that way and ought to be repaired by the inhabitants of the said parish.

The work on the Oystermouth half was to be finished within two months, but as the boundary ran down the river they had no intention of repairing the Swansea half.  Five years later the inhabitants were ordered to repair the rails on their part of the bridge.”

Not much has changed in three hundred years.  The bridge is in urgent need of repair  and in spite of the fact that a great deal of good will has been shown by the Civic Society, local residents associations and cabinet members the repairs need to be funded by grant applications and community funding, which takes time to organise with all the legal implications.

(Cllr Linda Tyler-Lloyd)