Published: 31 May 2016

Great engineering statues


We have been thinking about engineering statues: Below are five of the best structural and civil engineer statues we could find. Are there more great statues we should know about, in the UK and around the world? Are there others who deserve a statue but don’t yet have one? Let us know what you think!

Isambard Kingdom Brunel – London

There are a number of statues of Brunel, one of Britain’s most famous engineers and a giant of the industrial revolution. This bronze example was created by John Doubleday in 1982, sits between platforms 8 and 9 at Paddington Station,where he is commemorated as the Chief Engineer of the Great Western Railway.

As a civil and structural engineer Brunel created some of the greatest engineering landmarks in British history, including the Clifton Suspension Bridge, the Maidenhead Railway Bridge and the Royal Albert Bridge.

(image: wikimedia commons, Chris McKenna)

Joseph Strauss - San Francisco

Chiefly remembered as the structural engineer behind the Golden Gate Bridge, Strass revolutionised the design of Bascule Bridges and is credited with designing over 400 bridges in the United States, including Isleton Bridge, Johnson Street Bridge, and Chicago’s Kinzie Street Railroad Bridge.

This statue, standing overlooking the Golden gate Bridge, is by Frederick William Schweigardt.

(Image: wikimedia commons, Steven Pavlov)

Gustave Eiffel – Paris

This remarkable bust of Gustav Eiffel sits on the north pier of perhaps his most famous structure, the Eiffel Tower in Paris. The work is by Antoine Bourdelle.

Eiffel, still widely regarded as France’s greatest engineer, was responsible for many more iconic and varied structures, including New York’s Statue of Liberty, Nice observatory, Garabit Viaduct and Long Bien Bridge in Vietnam.

After retiring Eiffel made significant contributions in the fields of aerodynamics and meteorology.

(Image: wikimedia commons, Mario Sanchez Prada)

Thomas Telford – Shropshire

Commemorated by an iron statue in the town of Telford, Shropshire, which was named in his honour, Telford was responsible for innovative, beautiful structures like Pontcsyllte Aqueduct (which Sir Walter Scott called a “work of art”), the Menai Suspension Bridge, Lothian Bridge and Bannockburn Bridge. He was also the first President of the Institution of Civil Engineers. The statue was sculpted by Andre Wallace in 1987.

(Image: wikimedia commons, Row17) 

James Henry Greathead – London

Renowned for his work on The London Underground as Chief Engineer of the City and South London Railway, James Henry Greathead is remembered by this striking statue near the Bank of England, erected in 1994 and designed by James Butler.

The plaque commemorates his work on the Barlow-Greathead Shield, which revolutionised tunnelling methods.

(Image: wikimedia commons, Quick Fix)

Jonathan Carr
George Stephenson has at least two statues commemorating him, one at the National Railway Museum in York, and one outside Chesterfield train station. Indeed, Stephenson spent the last 10 years of his life in Chesterfield, and is buried in the town, at Holy Trinity Church. Chesterfield Museum has a gallery of Stephenson memorabilia, including straight thick glass tubes he invented for growing straight cucumbers, making him a true polymath!

In contrast, there is no statue of Richard Buckminster (‘Bucky’) Fuller at Bennington College in Vermont, USA, where he lectured during the 1930a and 1940s, even building an early geodesic dome prototype there.
08/06/2016 07:55:26

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