From Brycgstow to Bristol in 45 Bridges: 16th October 2019

Each one of Bristol’s bridges has a fascinating story which is woven intimately into the 1,000 year history of the city. When and why was it built? What was involved in its design, engineering and construction? What dramatic events sometimes swirled around and perhaps on it? In this talk Jeff Lucas tells the stories of a selection the 45 bridges which span the main waterways of Bristol between Avonmouth and St Anne’s, and which can be crossed on foot.

Illustrated with historical photos and Jeff’s own revealing photography, his talk will open up new ways of looking at these often beautiful structures that are usually overlooked in day-to-day life. The bridges are linked into a 45km circular walk that takes you from the nooks and crannies of the inner city to the open vistas of the Severn Estuary and back again.

This walk is also the solution to an intriguing puzzle called “The Königsberg Bridge Problem” : how to walk around a given set of bridges crossing each one only once. This problem eventually came to have enormous significance in mathematics and for the analysis of the complex systems much of our modern life depends on. Jeff will explain the background and how the problem was solved for Bristol’s 45 bridges by a young mathematician lately at Bristol University. The talk is based on Jeff’s book of the same name which is to be published by Bristol Books in June 2019.

Friends Meeting House, 126 Hampton Road, Redland, on Wednesday 16th October at 7.30 pm.