Manning Valley Historical Society


The Martin Bridge


The opening of the Martin Bridge across the Manning River at Taree in 1940 was a major event and opened a new era in Manning Valley history.

Click on photo to see an enlargement

Before The Bridge

Before the bridge the Pacific Highway, such as it was,  wound up through Gloucester, Krambach, across the Manning by punt at Tinonee, then through Taree.

# 1  -  Look no bridge! # 2  -  Tinonee Punt # 3  - Taree Punt

The Bridge Under Construction

In 1936, tenders were called for the building of a bridge over 
the Manning at Taree to cost £60 000 (the final cost was 
 £97 000 or $194 000 - but 1940 value).
  -  it had to have a carriageway above any possible flood level
  -  it had to have a span which could be elevated to allow shipping 
      to pass under it.

Construction began in early 1938 and took two years.

# 4 # 5 # 6
# 7 # 8 # 9
Photos #1 to 10 are courtesy of Picture Australia and may be purchased from their website:
# 10

The Opening of the Bridge

May 18, 1940

The official party at the opening of the bridge.

The photo has been split into three sections below (click on photos for an enlargement).


# 12
# 12-A # 12-B # 12-C
The bridge was opened by the Premier of NSW, 
Mr. Alexander Mair



This photo has also been split into three sections below.

# 13
# 13-A # 13-B # 13-C

The Official party can be seen on the lifting span, slightly elevated

# 14

During the Opening Ceremony the lifting span was elevated and the droger passed under the bridge.

# 15
After the official opening a large crowd crossed the bridge.


Were you there?


# 16
Here are four sections from the crowd? Recognize anyone?
# 16-A
# 16-B # 16-C # 16-D

After The Bridge

The punts ceased operating.

In 1952 the Pacific Highway was re-routed from 
from  Hexham - Stroud - Gloucester - Krambach - Taree 
to   Hexham - Stroud - Buladelah - Nabiac - Taree

In 1963 the Pacific Highway was again re-routed: 
Hexham - Karuah - Buladelah - Nabiac - Taree

In 1997 Taree was by-passed by a dual carriage expressway
with bridges onto and off Dumaresque Island.


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