1475- TWYFORD BRIDGE.
Like its sister, Town Bridge in the village, Twyford Bridge is a Grade 1 listed Ancient Monument. Both had bequests left for their maintenance and repair such as :-
An early record of 1325,
John Church in 1475,
Robert Parfett in 1488,and
John Harrenden in 1509 willed
his executors should “sell all my tools that belongeth to my craft”, and that the money should be “bestowed about Twyford brig”.
Prior to the Kent County Council, Highways Division being responsible for maintenance, such as the frequent damage to the corner parapet, the Churchwardens had Highway Surveyors to keep a check on general road conditions. Before that the local landowners and gentry, were made to be responsible for their adjacent highways, bridges, and other offending items.
A note from the County Court Quarter Sessions reads :-
Session Rolls at Maidstone 1st April, 1600
A public and common bridge on the highway within the hundred of Twyford commonly called Twiford Bridge (sic) for some years has been in a bad state of repair, which bridge should be repaired by the inhabitants of Twyford hundred.
Those called were:-
Robert Kennard, Robert Hayman, Robert Curche, Richard Barham
Thomas Coveney, the elder, and Richard Horden; each was fined 4d.
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From the Kent Assize Records for 1649 – 1659 comes the following: - (No 1179) Indictment of the inhabitants of Yalding for not repairing Twyford Bridge in Yalding.
(endorsed) True bill. March 1655.
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Twyford bridge has four pointed arches, with a radius of the lower parts of the curve that is greater than is usual for arches of this kind. The cut-waters are very massive, compared to the rather narrow ones of Town Bridge, but they are dealing with different width rivers. Both bridges have recesses for foot passengers, which is very necessary as Twyford has only about twelve feet in width between the parapets, with a span of forty yards over the river.