Fast forward some 140 years, and in November 2002 twelve vaulted chambers were discovered beneath the bridge. What was once assumed to be hollow abutments or filled with stone, actually contained a series of chambers that hadn’t been touched since the Victorian times.
Now the vaults have been opened to the public via a guided hard hat tour hosted by Clifton Suspension Bridge Trust, allowing visitors to explore the amazing structures that lie beneath.
To make it safe for the visiting public, flooring had to be selected that would meet three criteria: be sympathetic to the nature of the vaults, provide a safe surface for the visiting public, and be long lasting. Due to the extremely difficult access, fitment would be very labour intensive, so longevity was a really important aspect. Millboard decking met all three criteria.
For this wonderfully unique project, the team chose Weathered Oak Vintage decking boards. Being hand moulded from real oak that is over a century old, the boards look tastefully aged and utterly timeless, yet the low-maintenance qualities mean that the boards do not require regular sanding, staining or oiling. The excellent slip-resistant qualities also mean it is much safer than timber – an important consideration when the general public are visiting.
Millboard’s DuoSpan aluminium subframe system was also specified to create the ultimate long-lasting solution. The slot-and screw assembly provides an added bonus of an easier install, saving valuable time and money.
Contractor for the project, R&R Site Services, said:
“We saw such a high-quality of decking with an excellent natural finish. The DuoSpan aluminium subframe used to construct the decking was clearly designed for efficiency and flexibility, allowing for ease of installation – important when the project as a whole was very labour intensive due to limited accessibility!
As a company we can see the Millboard decking would be a great choice for a wide variety of applications and would be happy to recommend it.”