The new Clifton Bridge plaque
The new Clifton Bridge plaque

A historic plaque stolen from Clifton Bridge in 2014 has been replaced with the help of Labour’s Clifton councillors Margaret Wells and Danny Myers, working alongside York Civic Trust.

Clifton Bridge was built in 1963, replacing an earlier temporary bridge built at Water End by the 38 Corps Engineer Regiment to handle extra traffic for the marriage of the Duke and Duchess of Kent at York Minster on June 8, 1961. This temporary bridge had provided the first crossing to allow land traffic between Clifton and Leeman Road without going through the city centre.

The bridge proved useful enough to be replaced with a more permanent structure, and the current bridge was opened by Alderman Archibald Kirk, then Lord Mayor of York, on October 27, 1963. The plaque commemorated this event, until its theft five years ago.

Cllrs Wells and Myers have campaigned vigorously for a replacement, persuading the city council to work with the Civic Trust on the issue. The new plaque cost £600, provided by the Civic Trust whose volunteers also oversaw the installation work required.

The unveiling was carried out by David Fraser, Chief Executive of York Civic Trust, and attended by Cllrs Wells and Myers along with three generations of Alderman Kirk’s family.

Cllr Wells said: “We would like to thank members of the Kirk family for supplying us with the original designs of the plaque and for their support for a replacement. The Civic Trust have also been really good to work with on commissioning and installing the plaque. We hope to continue working closely withthem around improvements that are being made to Clifton Green’s fencing and cattle trough.”

Cllr Myers added: “The heritage of Clifton is important to us, and we want to ensure that all our local history is well looked after and remembered as a record for future generations.”

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