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Jumping off the Clifton Suspension Bridge.

Why?
Because it's just crying out to be done, and it is unlikely that anyone has done it before. (Note Aug2001: - we got an email from a guy who did it the 4th of February 2001! True style - one rope with 20ft to spare (freefalled about 225ft). Nice one!

When?
Hopefully sometime in year 2000

How?
There are two ways to do this sort of stuff - either along the bridge or across the bridge. The CSB is quite narrow so it looks like swinging along the bridge is most feasible. Click the 3d model on the left to see a rough animation of how to do it.

How far?
Ideally a full ropelenght - 50 meters (165ft). On the left you can see my proposed safety zones. Green is roughly 50 meters and red is hitting the water/mud at 76 meters (the official height). This leaves 26 meters for ropestretch which at the moment I have no idea how much is in a standard dynamic 11mm rope which is what I would intend on using.

What Hardware?
Rope: 50m 11mm dynamic Beal/Mammut?
Sling: Construction-style sling with in-sewn kevlar threads for attaching the rope to the metalstructure of the bridge (I had one of these, but it got munched in a fairly festive fall test in France)
Full SRT kit for getting up again
Petzl Jump harness + chest harness

The Good News:
They have a trolleylike thing running under the bridge which would make it relatively easy to:

1. Attach the rope on the middle
2. "Drive" to the one end of the bridge
3. Jump/Swing

The Bad News:
It might be illegal, and the fine might be quite high, so - priority number one is of course not to get injured but priority number two must be not getting caught. Hey, by the way - if you are a policeman or solicitor/lawyer in the Bristol area, please give us an an estimate on the fine - send an email to fine@willerup.com Thanks.

Latest idea:
Instead of jumaring up the rope again which might take you directly up into the Lions Den, then the current plan is to jump the bridge at night, then abseil down to the river (using an extra rope) and swim to the opposite riverbed (might be a mud issue) where a preplaced bike shoud take one back to safety.

Clifton Suspension Bridge - Facts
© 1994-99 Kevin Matthews - http://www.GreatBuildings.com/buildings/Clifton_Suspension_Bridge.html Approved
Architect Isambard Kingdom Brunel
Location Bristol, England
Date 1836 to 1864
Building Type Bridge, engineering structure
 Construction System suspension span
Climate temperate
Context rural
Style Victorian Functionalist
Notes Spans 702 feet across Avon Gorge on reused iron chains.
Discussion Clifton Suspension Bridge Commentary

"The Clifton Suspension Bridge, Bristol, designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, a versatile and imaginative engineer, was carried out contrary to the recommendation of Thomas Telford (1757-1834) who, as a result of the near destruction of his recently-built Menai Suspension Bridge (1819-26) by crosswinds, doubted the advisability of erecting a suspension bridge of this size in such an exposed position. The principal span of 214 m (702 ft) seems even more daring because of the 76 m (250 ft) deep gorge. It was characteristic of the period that Brunel sought to match the grandeur of the setting with a noble design, and the pylons (which were to have had sphinxes and hieroglyphic decoration) were of Egyptian inspiration. The bridge was delayed for lack of funds and was completed after Brunel's death using chains from another of his works, the Hungerford Suspension Bridge, London (1841-5)."

—Sir Banister Fletcher. A History of Architecture. p1107.


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