Wellesley Bridge in S’Patna in bad need of renovation

The 216-year-old Wellesley Bridge across the river Cauvery in Srirangapatna, Mandya district. DH PHOTO

The historic Wellesley Bridge, over the Cauvery river at Srirangapatna in Mandya district is in dilapidated state needing steps for its renovated.

The bridge erected in 1804, under the direction of Dewan Poornaiah, and named after the Governor-General, the Marquis of Wellesley, has survived the heaviest floods for two centuries without any major damage.

Built on native architecture, the structure is composed of stone pillars, capped with stone corbels, and surmounted by stone girders, on which the flags of the roadway are laid.

Peepal and banyan trees and bushes on both sides of the bridge have weakened the structure over the years. Roots of plants and trees have penetrated the bridge resulting in cracks. 

The retaining walls on both sides have grown weak. Bricks in the walls leak, say local residents. The work on the 500 feet long and 20 feet wide bridge started in August 1802 and was completed in October 1804 when Mummadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar was king.

N N Gowda, assistant curator, department of Archaeology and Museums told DH: “Though the bridge has stood the test of time, it is slowly showing signs of damage. It connected the road between Bengaluru and Mysuru until 1967 when the new  bridge was constructed.” 

“The bridge, which is 22 feet above the river level, has not been declared as a monument,” he said and added: “The department may take steps to declare it as a monument if people submit petitions.” 

“The bridge should be protected to withstand the nature’s fury in future or else it may vanish like the Lushington Bridge near Sathegala of Kollegal taluk, he expressed concern.

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Wellesley Bridge in S’Patna in bad need of renovation

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