The Albert Bridge was designed and built by Rowland Mason Ordish in 1873. Renovations were made between 1884 and 1877 by Sir Joseph Bazalgette since the bridge was found to be structurally unsound. Sir Joseph Bazalgette during the modification incorporated some design elements of a suspension bridge. Again in 1973 two concrete pillars were added by the Greater Council of London for further strengthening. Owing to all these modifications, today the Albert Bridge stands as an example of an unusual hybrid of three different design styles. It is an excellent example of a rigid suspension bridge.
The bridge was named in memory of Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Prince Consort of Queen Victoria. The bridge measures 710 feet in length, 41 feet in width and has a center span of 400 feet. The sum of money spent to build this bridge amounts to 200,000 pounds. The bridge was opened on 23 August 1873, without much fanfare.
The bridge has a nickname, “the Trembling Lady” because of its tendency to vibrate, when the troops from the nearby Chelsea Barracks crossed the bridge. Warning placards were put up instructing the troops to break step (not to march in rhythm) when crossing the bridge. Even today those placards are still in place though the bridge is not used by the troops anymore.
After World War II, it was decided that the bridge would be replaced. But because of a group of adamant Londoners, who protected the bridge back then, Albert Bridge still exists. Instead of replacing Albert Bridge, central supports were added in order to cope up with the increasing traffic. In the evening the bridge is lit elegantly and is a photographer’s muse.