London Road Viaduct
Brighton Viaduct (officially London Road Viaduct) is an imposing set of high Victorian brickwork arches carrying the main railway lines into Brighton Station. It was built in the 1840's as part of the original line, and was designed by John Urpeth Rastrick.
Rastrick also designed the Ouse Valley Viaduct as part of the same project, and the two viaducts are essentially siblings. The two viaducts share the same distinctive arching, pierced piers and balustrades, the main difference being that where the Ouse viaduct is ruler-straight (as can be seen from photographs taken through the central "windows" in each arch), the twenty-seven arches that make up the London Road viaduct form a comparatively tight curve. Both viaducts are Grade-II listed buildings.
Although most of the arches forming the viaduct are semicircular, the arch spanning Preston Road is significantly wider to take in the road's width, and its span has a more complex, "stretched" curve.
Although the Viaduct was originally built on essentially open land, the region below it quickly filled with houses as the new station broght in visitors and booseted the local economy. As a result, a structure that was originally one of Brighton's most impressive lanmarks is now difficult to see from most locations. The best views are from almost underneath the viaduct, just North of Preston Circus and the Duke of York's Picturehouse, past the head of London Road.
The Brighton-born boxer Tom Sayers (1826-1865), joint Champion of the first world boxing championship match (which concluded in a draw) worked on the viaduct while it was being built.
|Brighton Station – London Road Viaduct – London Road Station – Ouse Valley Viaduct– Clayton Tunnel|