One of Sydney’s most iconic landmarks, the famous Sydney Harbour Bridge, will celebrate its 75th birthday next month by closing for the day.
The Harbour Bridge draws tourists
from all over the world, many of whom are now able to take part in climbing the bridge, but on March 18th it will be closed to traffic as it celebrates its first birthday party.
Instead there will be mass congregations on the bridge whilst below and above the Australian Royal Navy and Royal Airforce will provide a sail and fly past. It will remain closed for 18 hours, the longest time it has ever been closed to traffic for, and in the evening an indigenous ‘smoking’ ceremony will be one of the highlights of the celebrations.
Visitors to Australia
are able to view the bridge and Sydney from a unique vantage point by scaling up its huge arch on the three and a half hour “BridgeClimb”, weather permitting. Climbs have been taking place along its southern edge since 1998.
Climbers must be reasonably fit to tackle the moderate climb, wear sensible rubber soled shoes and pass a breathalyser test (no alcohol) before climbing. Children must be over ten years old and under-16’s must be accompanied by an adult.
Harbour Bridge Facts:
- The Sydney Harbour Bridge is the world’s largest, but not longest, steel arch bridge. In its beautiful harbour location, the Bridge has become an international symbol of Australia.
- Construction of the Bridge started with the ‘Turning of the First Sod’ on 28 July 1923
- 18,000 cubic metres of rock facing were required for the Bridge project
- 52,800 tonnes of steel were used to construct the arch and approach spans
- Approximately 1,400 workers were employed on the Bridge project during the eight years of construction (not including subcontractors)
- The joining of the arch took place at 10 pm on 19 August 1930, linking the north and south shores of Sydney Harbour.
- The last stone was set in the north-west pylon on 15 January 1932
- The official Bridge opening ceremony took place on 19 March 1932