While bridges have been a feature of civilization for millennia, the development of materials, technologies and engineering knowledge has led to radical shifts in design and construction. To show the beauty of its bridges Australia Post unveiled three original stamps. From historic river crossings to high-tech modern architecture, each of these bridges shines a different light on Australian ingenuity.
StampNews.com encourages our readers to appreciate this historically and culturally valuable stamp issue.
In Australia, the first bridge constructed after European settlement was Richmond Bridge, in Tasmania, the stone structure built with convict labour between 1823 and 1825. This stamp issue focuses not on Australia's early bridges, but on three bridges from the 20th century.
The five-lane Tasman Bridge depicted on the first stamp crosses the Derwent River in Hobart, linking the CBD with suburbs in the east. It was completed in 1964 to replace the old Hobart Bridge.
Calamity struck the prestressed concrete-girder bridge in 1975, when a bulk ore carrier delivering cargo to a company in Risdon collided with the bridge's pylons. A large section of the bridge collapsed onto the vessel, killing seven crew and five motorists. The bridge was rebuilt by 1977.
Gladesville Bridge that is shown on the second stamp extends across the Parramatta River west of central Sydney, linking the suburbs of Huntleys Point and Drummoyne. It is one of a complex of three bridges, the other two being Fig Tree and Tarban Creek Bridges.
The Story Bridge that appeared on the third stamp is one of Brisbane's most notable landmarks, the striking bridge built in the late 1930s and opened in 1940. It was designed by John Bradfield, who also designed Australia's most famous bridge, Sydney Harbour Bridge.