Bridgnorth Cliff Railway – Bridgnorth, England - Atlas Obscura

Bridgnorth Cliff Railway

Bridgnorth, England

This charming railway is one of the oldest and steepest funiculars in England.  


Update as of October 2023: The railway is closed indefinitely. 

The busy town of Bridgnorth is divided into high and low parts by the River Severn. To improve connectivity, the Bridgnorth Cliff Railway was built in 1892, one of the oldest and steepest funicular railways in England.

The railway line carries passengers in two cars running on parallel tracks across the cliffs spanning a height of 111 feet. The line runs on a counterbalance system where one goes up as the other comes down, a mechanism originally driven by a water balance system.

The funicular was designed by railway engineer George Croydon Marks, who was also responsible for many other cliff railway lines in the region, and their popularity saw an upward swing from 1875.

Around 150 times a day, the trademark blue and cream colored cars make the journey along the 201-foot-long line, which is built into the sandstone cliff face. This key piece of infrastructure has been modernized over the years, most notably in the mid-20th century, when it was electrified. From the top of the line, the local landmark offers a bird’s-eye view of the picturesque English town.

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