Film ID:
NEFA 21690



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An amateur film made by Peter Dobing of the Darlington Video Film Makers showing the final lifting of the Tees Newport Bridge in Middlesbrough on the 18th December 1990.

Title: Darlington Video Film Makers

Title: Newport Bridge

Title: The Last Lift

The film opens on the Cleveland County Fireboat coming along the river Tees towards the Tees Newport Bridge where it is taking part in the formal closure of bridge. General views of the crew on the bridge.

A series of historical photographic images shows the construction and opening of the bridge with a commentary by filmmaker Peter Dobing on the bridge's history.

A number of pedestrians walk along a metal walkway onto the Newport Bridge as a siren sounds. Traffic lights beside the bridge blink red indicating that the bridge is about to be lifted.

From various vantage points from the water or along the banks of river Tees, the Newport Bridge lifts into the air. From the fireboat on the river, a line of people stand on the span as it lifts into the air. The fireboat travels under the bridge.

With the span at its full height, it is then lowered again back to road level filmed from various vantage points on and along the river. On the bridge, the counter-weight boxes and cast iron chains raise into the air as the span continues to come down watched by crowds on the bridge.

More archival images show the engine house on top of the bridge and the emergency petrol engine that could be used to lift or lower the bridge.

The film cuts to street level looking across the Tees as the span continues to be slowly lowered back into its original position. As it becomes level with the camera, a number of people can be seen walking along the roadway. A large crowd along the riverbank watches the lowering. On the bridge, a footpath fits back into place with the one on the ground completes the journey of the bridge.

A series of archival photographs shows the construction of the bridge across the river Tees at different stages.

General views showing the bridge being lifted for a second and final time from a number of positions on or beside the water watched by crowds of enthusiasts and locals. The Cleveland County Fireboat again travels under the bridge during this manoeuvre. With the span at it’s full height, it is then lowered back down to street level.

From the road looking down from the span a crowd watches on. With the span now back in position the film ends with pedestrians walking onto to the bridge.

End credit: Cameras John Alcock, Peter Dobing, John Oliver, Joe Powton

End credit: Editing and sound Peter Dobing