Coronation Bridge History - Darjeeling

Coronation Bridge History – Darjeeling

Siliguri , located in West Bengal is a beautiful city. This city is between two districts , Darjeeling and Jalpaiguri . When going to places like Kalimpong, Dooars and Sikkim you have to follow the road aside the banks of Teesta River. 25 kms away from Siliguri , You will find a bridge on top of Teesta River known as Coronation Bridge.

The heavy flow of Teesta and the greenery surrounding can be seen from the bridge. Due to this it has become an attractive place for tourists. Coronation Bridge is an excellent example of Roman architecture. Tourists come here to experience the view and design of this bridge. They come here to capture the view of blue water of Teesta.

This bridge acts as a lifeline for the people of Sikkim, Kalimpong and Dooars. There are only few bridges in India like this which is a great example of historical architecture and engineering. The bridge is built in National Highway 31. It is also known as BaghPool because there are statues of two tiger in the entrance.

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Well all these are just basic information. Do you want to know how and when this majestic Coronation Bridge was made? How making of this bridge possible despite the fact that Teesta becomes so dangerous during monsoon? What was the reason of building this bridge? You will get to know all of this in this article.

To learn about the history of Coronation Bridge. We have to go back in time when India was under British rule. Coronation means the act or ceremony of crowning a king or queen. During 12th May 1937, the coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth took place in Britian.

Coronation Bridge Darjeeling
Coronation Bridge Darjeeling

To make this coronation more memorable and valuable. Britishers of Bengal Province decided to build this bridge. The responsibility of designing the Coronation Bridge was taken by John Chambers. He was the last British Executive Engineer of Darjeeling PWD division. Its contract was given to Bombay based civil construction company Messrs J.C. Gammon which was founded by J.C. Gammon.

To make the difficulty of building this bridge easy, the took the help of 3 Bengali architects. They were Mr. A.C. Dutt, Mr. S.K. Ghosh and Mr. K.P. Roy. According to the design of John Chambers , the three architects followed bow kind of cantilever design. It was to be made above Teesta. They took the support of big rocks on the shores to make it strong.

The cost of building the Coronation Bridge is estimated to be around 6 lakh rupees. According to John Chambers the measurement of arcs is said to be around 1/250, 2/250 and 5/150 feet on either side of the river. I took 4 years to get completed. It was completed in the year 1941. The bridge’s age is estimated to be around 100 years.

This roman arc styled bridge is also called as Spandrel . Spandrel means the space between two arcs with a rectangular boundary.

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The first vehicle to run over it after the inauguration was of the Governor John Anderson. From then this bridge has been a connector of these cities. Today the age of this bridge is around 80 years. Due to weathering, traffic load the bridge is getting weaker.

Coronation Bridge of Darjeeling , once was so majestic . Now in order to maintain the bridge , people keep requesting the Central and State Government. People are also demanding a new bridge but the information of this is not yet clear . Still this bridge remains a great tourist spot and a lifeline for many people.

To learn more you can check the official wikipedia of Coronation Bridge

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