Tickle Cock Bridge

Castleford Regeneration

The Castleford Regeneration Project was part of the Channel 4 Television series that charted the merit of key areas in the town centre.

DSDHA won first prize to redevelop the main pedestrian entry to the centre, Tickle Cott Bridge, to provide a warm, welcoming yet intimate landscape solution that provides seating and a safe route for users.

Having taken time to consult the public, DSDHA’s Deborah Saunt and Sam Potter initiated radical improvements to the derelict underpass and narrow pathways, and instead created a well designed public space where people could meet comfortably and no longer have to huddle up close to one another as they filed through the darkness. DSDHA worked in collaboration with the innovative Artist Martin Richman and he has been responsible for new lighting and a flock lining to the concrete structure – echoing the location’s more popular name of Tickle Cock Bridge. Working with a local historian anecdotes were unearthed about the ribald goings on and cherished relationships that grew out of late-night assignations at Tickle Cock Bridge….and that Victorian prudery had eradicated by naming it Tittle Cott Bridge, thus sanitising a key part of the town’s popular culture.

Meanwhile, DSDHA have developed the design to involve completely rebuilding the existing 1890s underpass as well as creating new public space. It include an multi-facetted and generous seating shelter with room for people to rest, along with and open plaza and green space which replaces overgrown wasteland and tumbledown walls.

Built on an extremely tight budget and with the challenging logistics of working under a live railway line, the project challenges one pre-conceptions of how the less significant places in our town’s deserve well designed infrastructure to compliment the more prominent projects that regeneration attracts. Here, everyday life is improved for thousands on an intimate and immediate level, working in tandem with the new town square and market place improvements– and the good news is that the shops in Castleford are now opening on Sunday…

The design has been developed with the support of engineers Jane Wernick Engineers and Max Fordham Partnership.

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