Gower’s Bridge, Llanrwst

Gower’s Bridge, Llanrwst

llanrwst_gower_vehicular_bridgeGower's Bridge, which crosses the river Conwy near Llanrwst, is a something of a hidden gem.  It provides a footpath connecting the town with Trefriw.

In 1833, a spa was built near Trefriw at what was believed to be a Roman well. Later a quay was established in the village and paddle steamers brought many visitors, eager to benefit from the healing power of the waters or simply to enjoy the scenery.

The Rev John Gower – rector of Trefriw for 43 years – had a toll bridge built here in 1861 to provide a more convenient way for villagers to go to Llanrwst, rather than using the tortuous toll road via Pont Fawr. The wooden structure was built for horse-drawn carriages to cross, as shown in the photo on the right. Beyond the bridge is the toll keeper’s house. You can still see some of its remains beside the river.

The structure was soon known as Gower’s Bridge, or Pont Gower. The lane either side of the bridge is Gower Road.

After the railway opened to Llanrwst in 1863, visitors came by train and took carriages over the bridge to the spa. The station now known as North Llanrwst was once named Llanrwst and Trefriw.

llanrwst_gower_suspension_bridgeCaernarvonshire County Council took on the bridge in the 1940s, by which time it was in a dilapidated state. Rather than replace it with a structure capable of carrying modern traffic, the council chose to build a footbridge instead. The present bridge was completed in 1947 at the cost of just £1,500!

The graceful suspension bridge might also be called a Love Bridge! Couples have plighted their troth here in the form of padlocks with their names inscribed on them. A count in 2018 revealed there were 40 padlocks. One couple, Sharon and Alex, had two: the first inscribed “Locked in Love”, the second “Locked in Love for ten years. Boom”.

With thanks to John Lawson-Reay

Postcode: LL26 0EH    View Location Map