A team of local enthusiasts, supported by the Barnes Community Association, has a vision to transform the historically important and long-redundant Grade II listed span of Barnes Railway Bridge, crossing the Thame, into an attractive landscaped walkway provisionally called the Barnes Highline.
If successful, the Barnes Highline will be the first Thames green crossing, linking Barnes and Chiswick (Dukes Meadow). The project will make use of the surviving and long-redundant original railway bridge of 1849 which was designed by well-known bridge engineer Joseph Locke.
Over the last few years the team behind the project has managed to secure the support of Network Rail who own the bridge, of Councils both side of the river and of our local MP. The next challenge is to ensure step-free access at Barnes Bridge station so that people in wheelchairs and buggies will be able to get onto the new Barnes Highline. Once we understand if this can be included as part of our project plan we can begin to consider how we take forward this exciting project.
A bit of history about Barnes Bridge
The original Barnes Railway Bridge was designed by the London and South Western Railway’s eminent civil engineer Joseph Locke with his associate, John Errington, and built by the great Victorian contractor Thomas Brassey and opened in August, 1849.
In 1893-1895 a new double-bridge was built adjacent to the 1849 bridge leaving the original bridge intact. The new bridge opened in June, 1895. The original bridge was closed and has remained disused ever since. It was given protection as a Grade II listed structure in 1983. It is not easy to spot that there are two bridges side-by-side at Barnes Bridge unless you are looking for them.