The Ribble Viaduct is 104 feet (32 m) high, 440 yards (402 m) long and has 24 arches. It is located at the foot of the mountain of Whernside in Cumbria. Designed by the engineer John Sydney Crossley, work started on 12 October 1870 and was completed in 1874.
During the building, which involved over 2000 Navvies as well as Women and Children, so many deaths occured from a combination of accidents, fights, and smallpox outbreaks, that the churchyard at nearby Chapel-le-Dale had to be extended (paid for by the railway) to accomodate the burials. There is a memorial in that churchyard dedicated to all those who died.
On Sunday 22nd July 2007, Network Rail allowed enthusiasts to walk across the viaduct as it had been closed for ongoing maintenance, as was due to re-open the following day. This had never been allowed before, nor is it likely to happen again. A truely historic occassion which we were pleased to be able to take part in.
© photogenique (dave peddie): using this image for any purpose and in any way, without prior permission, may lead to legal action.