History of iconic Pritchard Bridge near Kamloops is a mystery | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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History of iconic Pritchard Bridge near Kamloops is a mystery

A driver waits for the oncoming cars to clear the Pritchard Bridge, Friday, Sept. 3, 2021, which has a one-way lane.
September 05, 2021 - 7:05 AM

A wooden bridge in Pritchard, east of Kamloops along the Trans-Canada Highway, has an uncommon design and the history of the structure appears to be a bit of a mystery.

The bridge, that connects residential areas on either side of the South Thompson River, is a one-way trestle bridge that arches to a circle in the centre where drivers stop to let oncoming traffic pass before driving down the other side.

A raised wooden sidewalk runs along one side, akin to the iconic walkways in the historical town of Barkerville.

The railings on the sides of the Pritchard Bridge are made of wood and a raised wooden sidewalk runs along one side.
The railings on the sides of the Pritchard Bridge are made of wood and a raised wooden sidewalk runs along one side.

Pritchard resident Jo Sarada says the bridge is a key feature in the community. 

"The bridge is a place where residents and visitors gather," Sarada said. "It is has a beautiful view over the river and there are camping spots around it.

"The locals are aware of how to drive on the one-way bridge but sometimes there are visitors camping and fishing who allow kids and pets to run around on it, which is risky. It is an old local structure that makes our small town unique."

The Kamloops Museum suggested looking through its archives.

For now, the history of this unique wooden bridge remains a mystery.

Pritchard Bridge with old style wooden trestles and arch showing.
Pritchard Bridge with old style wooden trestles and arch showing.


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