Heritage experience to inspire future engineers

The engineers of tomorrow enjoyed an introduction to the engineering of yesteryear and its relevance today, thanks to an enrichment day organised by the medieval Trust which sponsors them.

The event for the Rochester Bridge Trust Arkwright Engineering Scholars involved exploring behind the scenes areas of one of London’s most iconic landmarks, Tower Bridge.

During the tour the current and former scholars, accompanied by representatives of the Trust, explored the towers, walkways, Victorian Engine Rooms, and the operational areas which include the control cabin, machinery room and the massive bascule chambers.

Sue Threader, Bridge Clerk [Chief Executive] at the Rochester Bridge Trust, explained: “Classroom learning and technical drawings can teach us a lot about engineering, but to see and experience the engineering first-hand is an incredibly important learning experience, and the bascule chambers of Tower Bridge are a particularly inspirational setting to visit.

“The chambers house the 420-tonne counterweights that balance the lifting part of Tower Bridge. Located within the piers, each chamber is 27 metres high and it was remarkable to visit this space and talk about the engineering involved in their creation and use.

“Even after decades as an engineer, I was fascinated by these surroundings and it was good to see the impact the experience had on the young people.”

The day was completed with a visit to the Sky Garden on the roof of the Walkie Talkie Building, where the students could explore the garden and enjoy views across a number of London’s other engineering feats.

For more information about the engineering scholars, visit their profile pages here.

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