Menai Suspension Bridge / Port Menai
Designed by Thomas Telford and completed in 1826 this Grade I listed bridge, over the Menai Strait, was built to link mainland of Wales to the island of Anglesey and provide a safer and quicker journey from London to Holyhead. To this day it is an impressive and iconic bridge; a £1 coin was minted in 2005 featuring an image of the bridge and it was even mentioned in a poem in Lewis Carroll's "Through the Looking-Glass".
This 2450 brick set is at 1:500 scale, approximately 130cm x 13cm x 18cm, making for a quite substantial but displayable piece.
I choose the colour to reflect the natural light brown glow of Penmon limestone use on the bridge. I made sure to include detailing of the towers, with tiles through sunken window pieces to create the tall archway look and reversed plates for the plaques. The edges of the bridge either side of the span have a crenelated top and I used a structure of plates with center studs to create the slight difference in width between the bridge and it's support structure.
Placement of the support chains was the most challenging part of the design (in LDD): they are connected to the towers and several of the vertical supports and may be connected to most of them within a physical build. Although their are many more real supports, they are thinner and I felt the beams used here give the set a look that people would recognise.
On the island side the chains are anchored within the road and on the mainland the chains are anchored within a small fortified building, here the build uses some interesting techniques to recreate the detail of the structure along with printed tiles for the signs along with a small bench outside.
The set includes Beach road under the west side of the bridge and paths under the other side along with the tall foliage that surrounds the base of the towers.
There are a number of figures and various cars throughout: to demonstrate scale and bring a bit of life to the model.
On the Menai Stait I have included a 37 brick sailing ship, which is based on a ship depicted on a 1840 image of the bridge, and not the HMS Conway.
I hope this set has your support so it can be produced in time for the bridge's bicentennial.