The Opening of the Great Southern and Western Railway from Dublin to Cork — the Monard Viaduct

The Opening of the Great Southern and Western Railway from Dublin to Cork — the Monard Viaduct. Source: the 1849 Illustrated London News. T. — George P. Landow [Click on image to enlarge it.]

A portion of the article accompanying the illustration

In our Journal for March the 24th, we recorded the opening of this line of rail-way from Dublin to Mallow, en route to Cork; and have now much pleaaure in laying before oar readers the details of its completion to the latter city.

From the many “engineering difficulties” on this portion of the line, it was found impossible to progress with it at the same rate as some of the other portions. Immediately after leaving the Mallow terminus, we reach a lengthy viaduct, and next a cutting measuring nearly one mile, with 90 feet of depth. From the time of quitting the terminus at Mallow, to our arrival at Blackpool, the railway may be said to be one continued series of cuttings, fillings, and viaducts. The viaduct near Mallow counts ten arches, and measures 515 feet from buttress to buttress with an elevation from the bed of the river to the level of the rail of 55 fret. The next viaduct, the Monard (of which we give a View), measures 360 feet from buttress to buttress, and has an elevation from the foundation to the rail of 98 ft.; whilst the next, that of Kilnap (which passes through Mr. Shaw's beautifully laid out grounds), has an elevation of 108 feet, by 412 feet from buttress to battress. The bridge on the old Mallow road, by the way — which was, some few years since, considered a wondrously high bridge — now, contrasted with its more lofty neighbour, sinks into comparative insignificance. One peculiarity in connexion with the viaduct of Kilnap is, that, whilst it has a curve, it has also an inclination of 1 in 60 feet; and it is gratifying to be able to state, that, notwithstanding the novelty of the work to many of the bands employed on them, not a single accident occurred during their construction; and Mr. Dargan, the contractor, not only expresses himself content with the attention of those employed, but maintains that no better work could be produced in the entire country.

The present terminus at Blackpool, though surrounded with substantial buildings for stables, hospitals, and workshops, is little more than a wooden shed. From the station to the entrance to the tnnnel is but some few hundred yards, and seems to strike ail those unacquainted with the powers of steam as fearful, from its great fall — said to be 1 in 60; but positively asserted by those almost as well qualified io Judge as the officers of the compmy, to be nearer 1 in 30.

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“Lord Clarendon’s Visit to Cork and the Opening of the Great Southern and Western Railway .” The Illustrated London News 15 (27 October 1849): 273-74. Hathi Trust version of a copy in the University of Michigan Library. Web. 30 November 2015.

Last modified 1 December 2015