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Bamboo logic

You refer to the famous 'heavy' reinforced concrete bridge designs in your articles on the M1.

There were prejudices then as now! A number of prestressed concrete bridges had been built (the pre-stressed concrete footbridge in St James Park had been poured in the night of 6 June 6 1957).

When I asked Sir Owen (Williams) at a meeting we were jointly attending whether he had considered prestressed concrete he sharply replied that he would prefer to use bamboo as the reinforcement rather than use prestressed concrete. Perhaps we were lucky that he chose reinforcing steel! Although I believe it was not easy to get the concrete in!

FRANCIS WALLET, 13 Julien Road, Coulsdon, Surrey, CR5 2DN

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