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Essex Bridge, Great Haywood

The longest surviving packhorse bridge in Britain, it crosses the river Trent on 14 arches and is listed Grade I.
Red Wheel Site:
Transport Mode(s):
ST18 0SR
ST18 0SR
Visitor Centre:

About Essex Bridge, Great Haywood

Essex Bridge is a Grade I listed packhorse bridge over the River Trent near Great Haywood, Staffordshire.

Crossing the River Trent one hundred yards downstream of the junction with the River Sow, it was built in 1550 by the then Earl of Essex for Queen Elizabeth I so that when she visited the estate she could go hunting in the woodland nearby. It is close to Shugborough Hall. It is now the longest remaining packhorse bridge in England with 14 of its original 40 span arches left.


At the end of Trent Lane in Great Haywood. This is a continuation of Main Road, a turning off the A51, just beyond the Clifford Arms.

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Hindley, G. History of the Roads. Peter Davies. ISBN 0 8065 0290 8 (1971)

Jackson, Gibbard. From Track to Highway. (1935)

Jervoise, E. Ancient Bridges of England. Architectural Press. (1932)

Sheldon, G. From Trackway to Turnpike. Oxfd. Univ. Press. (1928)

Taylor, C. Roads and Tracks of Britain. ISBN 0 460 04329 3 (1979)


National Transport Trust, Old Bank House, 26 Station Approach, Hinchley Wood, Esher, Surrey KT10 0SR