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Electricity versus Telephone Poles

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Pole of the Month

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Pole of the Month - February 2017

Where's this pole been all my life?; Tom Grimes - whose address at any one time can best be written as “A Canal, Somewhere, UK” - submitted this latest Pole of the Month. Tom chugs his way around the waterways of Britain pausing only to read The Telegraph Pole" by W.H. Brent, B.Sc. (Hons.) A.M.I.E.E.

This iconic bridge/pole hybrid can be found where the A519 crosses the Shropshire Union Canal near Norbury, Staffs. High Bridge No. 39, aka Telegraph Bridge carries probably one of the most photographed poles in the country – at least by canal boatsfolk.

With this bridge and incorporated pole having been declared a listed building by Historic England it ought to be preserved as a museum piece for all time. Here's what the Listing document has to say about it:

High Bridge (Bridge No. 39) was erected between 1832 and 1833 to carry the road from Newcastle-under-Lyme to Newport. Shortly after its construction, however, the pressure being exerted onto the bridge from the cutting walls required the insertion of a strainer arch. In 1861 the United Kingdom Electric Telegraph Company installed telegraph cables along the entire length of the canal and the strainer arch was subsequently used for the siting of a telegraph pole. The telegraph wires were replaced with telephone wires in 1870...

First 2 pics courtesy of ye olde Sea Dog Tom Grimes (presume that's him and that's his vessel) Close up (c) Peter Evans, off Geograph.org.uk

Bridge 39 over the Shropshire Union Canal has a telegraph pole incorporated between arches.Bridge 39 over the Shropshire Union Canal has a telegraph pole incorporated between arches.
Close up of the integral 5 armed telegraph pole in Bridge 39