IT TOOK 1/4-tonne of coal and 2,000 litres of water to travel just seven miles.
And it also took Selwyn Copley the best part of eight hours to complete the ‘epic’ journey on his 1922 Burrel Steam road roller – but he loved every minute of it.
Selwyn, 65, of Jagger Green, drove his roller from Jagger Green to Brown Cow Bridge at Scammonden yesterday to commemorate two events.
One was to mark 38 years since the Queen opened Scammonden Dam and bridge on October 14, 1971 and the other was to honour well-known engineer Fred Dibnah who drove a steam engine from Bradford to the landmark bridge several years ago.
Selwyn, who was on board with friend Alan Taylor from Marsden, needed his Massey Ferguson tractor in support to carry all the coal and water.
“It was a beautiful day,’’ said Selwyn. “A lot of people stopped to take photographs of us en route. I enjoyed every minute of it.
“The roller has a top speed of 3mph, so people had plenty of time to take their pictures.’’
The roller was made by Charles Burrel and Sons Ltd based at Thetford in Norfolk and spent its working life rolling hardcore to make roads.
“As soon as we reached the bridge we turned round and came back,’’ said Selwyn, a retired meat technology expert. “After all, there’s not a lot else to do up there.’’
Brown Cow Bridge – also known as Scammonden Bridge – was reputed to be the longest single span bridge in the world when it was built.
It has a span of 410ft supporting eight walls which, with four further walls on the cutting sides under the approach spans, carry a deck 660ft long and 120 ft above the motorway.