Tower Bridge Facts

Here are some facts about London’s Tower Bridge.

  • Tower Bridge was built between 1886 and 1894.
  • It spans the River Thames, connecting the London boroughs of Tower Hamlets (north side) and Southwark (south side).

  • The bridge combines elements of a suspension bridge design with elements of a bascule bridge design. It has two towers linked by two walkways and suspended sections to either side of the towers, stretching towards the banks of the Thames.
  • Tower Bridge was designed by Sir Horace Jones, the City Architect.
  • The central span of the bridge can be raised to allow ships to pass.
  • More than 400 workers helped to build the bridge and over 70000 tons of concrete were was sunk to the bed of the River Thames to suport the bridge.
  • Tower Bridge is 244 metres long and each tower is 65 metres high.
  • The pedestrian walkways are over 40 metres above the river when it’s at high tide.
  • Although the design of the bridge is much admired today, it was quite heavily criticised when it was built.
  • Over 40000 people use Tower Bridge every day.
  • River traffic takes priority over bridge users, but you must give 24 hours notice if you need the bascules to be raised to allow your ship to pass. They are raised more than 1000 times a year.
  • During the celebrations to mark the 2012 Olympic Games being held in London a massive set of Olympic Rings was displayed on Tower Bridge.
  • Many people think that Tower Bridge is called London Bridge, when in fact they are two different crossings.
  • The Tower Bridge LEGO set, released in in 2010 as set 10214, contains more than 4000 pieces.

What next? Discover more London facts by following the link to our London resources page.