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The Tyne Bridge celebrates 90 years

The Tyne Bridge Photo: PA

The Tyne Bridge celebrates its 90th Birthday today. To celebrate, more than 90 female civil engineers across the UK will gather at the iconic monument.

The event 'Women in Engineering', has been organised by Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) in partnership with Northumbria University.

The occasion will also celebrate Dorothy Buchanan. She was the the first member of the Institution of Civil Engineers and a member of Dorman Long that worked on the Tyne Bridge before its official opening.

Since then thousands of women have followed in Dorothy's footsteps, with around 8,000 Institution of Civil Engineering members, worldwide.

Facts about the Tyne Bridge:

  • In 1925, work began on the Bridge and took 3 years to complete
  • The Tyne Bridge was opened by King George V and his wife, Queen Mary on 10th October 1928
  • It was the first of its kind in Britain at the time of construction
  • The bridge was built from steel and Cornish granite
  • It was welded together with rivets and panels
  • The stonework on the towers was not completed until 1929
  • The total cost at the time was £1.2 million
  • A special green paint was made by J. Dampney Co of Gateshead
  • The Tyne Bridge was considered an engineering triumph of it's time.
  • It was upgraded to a Grade II listed structure by Historic England.
Credit: PA

The North East has very strong connections to civil engineering and we are delighted to be celebrating not only the Tyne Bridge's 90th anniversary, but also Dorothy's contribution to the creation of such an iconic structure."

– Penny Marshall, Regional director of ICE North East

Women have carved out successful careers in civil engineering for decades now, as is exemplified by Dorothy Buchanan's contribution to the creation of the Tyne Bridge, 90 years ago. We want to celebrate the contribution and impact that female engineers continue to make in the field and reaffirm that engineering is a profession open to anyone, regardless of gender."

– Vikki Edmondson, Civil Engineering Senior Lecturer at Northumbria University