THE story of the Menai suspension bridge celebrated as a 'thing of beauty and a triumph of engineering' for two hundred years is being told in a new book.

The publication – Menai Suspension Bridge – The First 200 Years has been written by Bob Daimond.

Menai Heritage, which runs the Bridges Exhibition, at Menai Bridge, announced the publication to coincide with a 200th anniversary event at Menai Bridge held at the weekend.

Despite wet weather, organisers say the event was "well attended," with over 400 people visiting stands, watching historical re-enactments, hearing the North Wales Saxophone Choir perform and attending a formal unveiling of a plaque.

Back in August 10, 1819, the first stone of the Menai Suspension Bridge was officially laid.

Then, the world famous bridge was considered a marvel of its age and was one of the largest suspension bridges ever built at the time.

The bridge's full story is told in the 200 page, fully illustrated book which takes readers from the formation of the Menai Strait, 5,200 years ago, through to the early designs for a bridge, to the Parliamentary struggles to get approval for construction.

Details of how the challenges posed during construction were overcome, and the way the masonry and ironwork work together to span the Strait are also discussed.

The book also features information about the use and refurbishment of the bridge over the years.

Author Bob Daimond is a trustee and former chairman of the Menai Bridge Community Heritage Trust, is a Chartered Civil Engineer and former Director of Highways for Gwynedd.

He has been interested in the Menai Strait bridges for many years and raises awareness of the importance and sustainability of infrastructure heritage, as well as introducing students to the contribution of engineering to modern society.

The book costs £10 and is available at the Menai Heritage Bridges Exhibition, in the Thomas Telford Centre, Menai Bridge (across from Waitrose), open Wednesdays and Thursdays, 10am-5pm.

It can also be purchased online at