The Bailey Bridge - A forgotten hero of World War 2

When it comes to the machines and equipment that helped to win World War 2 we hear all the time about the contribution made by such iconic aeroplanes as the Spitfire and the Lancaster as well as that made by ships like HMS Hood, but the huge contribution made by other pieces of military engineering was equally as significant, particularly to the army on the ground. A perfect example of such a piece of engineering which made a huge difference to the ability of the troops to move quickly on the ground is the Bailey Bridge.

Dreamed up by British civil servant Donald Bailey, who liked to create model bridges as a hobby, this relatively simple piece of engineering was credited by Field Marshal Montgomery as making "an immense contribution towards ending World War II." The usefulness of the Bailey Bridge stemmed from the fact that it required no special tools or heavy equipment at all to construct and yet it was incredibly strong. The wood and steel parts were compact and light enough to be transported in trucks and lifted into place by hand.

Among many old army regiments stories of Bailey Bridges being erected in hazardous conditions and in incredibly quick times are legendary. Indeed, the longevity of the design as a strong, temporary bridge was such that versions of the Bailey Bridge are still in use today with companies like who use it as the basis for their modern Bailey Bridge systems.

Giving the credit that the Bailey Bridge deserves

The part played by aircraft, tanks and guns during World War 2 is well known, but some other, seemingly more mundane equipment also played a vital role in helping to win the war too. One of the most significant of these and a piece of engineering which made an enormous difference to the mobility of allied troops is the Bailey Bridge.

It was the invention of a civil servant named Donald Bailey, whom the bridge design was named after. The simple idea of a modular bridge which could easily be transported in pieces in small sized military trucks and which could be put together manually and yet could also carry vehicles as heavy as the 40 tonne Churchill tank was the thing that made the Bailey Bridge invaluable to the Army. Indeed, the versatility of the Bailey Bridge design was such that versions When you liked this information as well as you would like to obtain guidance concerning Mabey i implore you to stop by our own website. of the bridge are still in use today with companies like Mabey who use it as the basis for their modern Bailey Bridge temporary bridging systems.

Bailey Bridges can be found in use today in places as far apart as Australia, the USA and the UK. In recent years, the Bailey Bridge design has been seen helping to restore vital links for communities hit by flooding in places like the Lake District due to companies such as Mabey who still use their own modern versions of the original Bailey Bridge design. As we can see, the humble Bailey Bridge really is an example of a simple design that changed the World for the better.