Some original items from our collections are on display in our Visitor Centre. Descriptions and images of our collections can be searched and browsed via our online catalogue. From the catalogue you can download images, including historical photographs of the bridge and technical drawings.
Clifton Suspension Bridge Trust’s collections are currently being processed and new descriptions are added all the time. If you would like to view any items, need help with your research or accessing images, or are interested in volunteering to help with our collections work, please contact our Archivist.
The Brunel Collection at the Brunel Institute
Some archival documents and artefacts owned by Clifton Suspension Bridge Trust are currently on loan to the Brunel Institute (a partnership between the University of Bristol and SS Great Britain). Descriptions of them can found in the University of Bristol Library Online Archive Catalogue. These items are referenced DM484, DM1929 and DM2319.
If you are researching Isambard Kingdom Brunel, then a fantastic starting point for locating primary source material is the Brunel Collection. Some of Brunel’s original competition designs for Clifton Suspension Bridge (DM1761) and the iron work contract (DM2121) and drawings for the original chains of the bridge and are held as part of this collection alongside his personal calculations, writings, correspondence and sketchbooks.
To make an appointment to view these original items, please contact the Brunel Institute, SS Great Britain, Great Western Dockyard, Bristol, BS1 6TY, 0117 926 0680. For further information, see the Brunel Institute website.
Bristol Museum and Art Gallery and the MShed hold artworks and objects relating to Clifton Suspension Bridge, including some of Brunel’s original competition designs. Descriptions and images of these can be accessed through its online catalogue.
Three volumes of letter books created by the Trustees of Clifton Suspension Bridge, dated 1831 – 1839, 1839 – 1857, 1860 – 1862 are held by Bristol Archives. These items were deposited by Bristol solicitors, Osborne, Ward, Vassall, Abbot & Co in 1957, who were the legal representatives for the Trust at the time. (References: 12167/42, 12167/43, 12167/44). Arrangements to see these items can be made by contacting:
B Bond Warehouse, Smeaton Road
Bristol BS1 6XN
T: 0117 922 4224