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The Twin Sails Bridge is a double leaved bascule bridge that spans the Backwater Channel in Holes Bay connecting the town center of Poole, in Dorset, England, to Hamworthy. In the closed position, the bridge lays flat over its supporting pillars, but when the two spans of the bridge are lifted to allow boats to pass, the two triangular lifting leaves resembles the sails of a yacht. The triangular shape is caused by the fact that the bridge isn’t dissected perpendicularly across its width, but at an angle, creating two long, opposing triangles that lie side by side. When the bridge is opened, they rise skyward, like a pair of masts opening their sails.

The two triangular leaves measure 23 meters each, and when lifted, they provide a clear channel 19 meters wide for boats to pass through. The lift spans are powered by two hydraulic rams which operate up to 15 times per day, and take two minutes to fully open.

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Photo credit: Tanya Hart/Flickr

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© Amusing Planet, 2016.


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