The Green Oak Carpentry Company proudly received a commission from the National Trust to reconstruct the original William Halfpenny Chinese Bridge at Croome Court, the Coventry family’s residence from the 17th century. After passing to the National Trust in 1996, Croome Court underwent ongoing renovations. The original design by William Halfpenny proved invaluable for accurate reconstruction, adhering to specified timber section sizes.
Built for the 6th Earl of Coventry in 1751, the bridge’s location and width were verified by archaeologists. The bridge pylons, set in the moat on new caissons, utilized fresh sawn oak above water and Greenheart below. Draw-bored mortise and tenon joints held by cleft oak pegs were employed, with Greenheart used for posts and beams.
The bridge’s 3D model, a collaboration with The Morton Partnership Consulting Engineers, guided the project. Carpentry began in March 2015, with the opening to the public in June. Future plans included painting the structure in traditional white oil-bound distemper to match its historical look. The project’s success stemmed from collaborative efforts and meticulous craftsmanship.