Ouse Bridge

The Ouse Bridge carries the M62 between junctions 36 and 37 over the River Ouse, north of Goole.


Traffic to and from Hull to the A1 historically went over Boothferry Bridge on the A614.

The position of the bridge and the M62 resulted from a study carried out in 1964 by Scott Wilson Kirkpatrick & Partners. They would also design the bridge. It is a haunched girder bridge.

In the early stages an immersed tube tunnel was considered, which was thought to be too expensive. 1,310 metres (4,300 ft) of the River Ouse had to be bridged. The gradient of the road on the approach to the bridge is 1 in 33.

The Ouse Bridge Contract for £6.75 million (£71 million in today’s figures) was awarded in January 1973 to a consortium of Costain Civil Engineering and Redpath Dorman Long.

It was opened on 24 May 1976. It was the last section of the main part of the M62 to open.

Rakewood Viaduct

You are probably not likely to notice the Rakewood Viaduct. This is because its not something you’ll see, it is something you drive over.


It carries the motorway over Rakewood Valley and Longden End Brook between junctions 21 and 22 at Littleborough in Greater Manchester.

The viaduct is 840 feet long and 140 feet above the valley floor. It was built in 1966 by Reed and Mallik Ltd and opened to motorway traffic in October 1971. It has a sister bridge, The Gathurst Viaduct which carries the M6 Motorway over the Leeds to Liverpool Canal, Manchester to Southport Railway and River Douglas and was constructed prior to the Rakewood Viaduct.

The steelwork deck was subcontracted to Robert Watson Steelwork Ltd of High Street Bolton. William Openshaw of Bolton was the foreman in charge of the steelwork. Eric Baldwin and Mark Baldwin both of Wigan were steel erectors during construction.

Due to the height of the bridge and the surrounding hillside exposure it is often subject to high speed cross winds.

Pennine Way Footbridge

The pedestrian bridge carrying the Pennine Way is one of the most impressive sights on the M62. It is curved downwards with 85-foot (26 m) long cantilevers.

Pennine Way crossing of M62

© Copyright George Tod and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

The Pennine Way, which was officially opened in 1965, is intersected by one of Britain’s busiest motorways, close to Rishworth Moor.

The Pennine Way footbridge, which spans the M62 is an instantly recognisable landmark for both commuters and walkers alike. This narrow bridge has a span of 320ft and carries Britain’s first long-distance footpath 65ft above the carriageway.

During the design stages for the building of the M62 the Pennine Way had not yet being granted Public Right of Way status and therefore no plans had been considered to erect a footbridge, to allow safe passage across the future trans-Pennine motorway. The original intention was that Pennine Wayfarers would have to follow the A672 underneath the motorway and re-join the footpath further north. However it is said that Ernest Marples, a former Manchester Rambling Club member, and owner of Marples/Ridgeway Civil Engineering Contractors, played an instrumental part in ensuring that the pedestrian bridge was built.

Apparently the original design for the bridge was to span the motorway horizontally. However, some sources say that the Transport Minister, who was in office at the time, was a prolific walker and insisted that a more impressive structure be built. This decision is said to have considerably increased the construction costs. Whatever the original design, the final structure consists of a reinforced concrete three pin arch which has a span of 220ft, complete with side cantilevers. Each cantilever supports pre-stressed concrete approach spans each of which are 85ft long.

Since its original construction this now iconic landmark has provided safe passage, above the swarming traffic, for thousands upon thousands of walkers making their 270 mile pilgrimage along Britain’s best known National Trail.

This information is taken from here: http://saddleworthdiscoverywalks.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/the-m62-pennine-way-footbridge.html

There’s a brilliant photo and an interesting tale of how the footbridge came to exist can be found here.