Dibble Bridge

Spanning the Esk, a mile west of Castleton is the 18th century Dibble Bridge. Built of local sandstone, the bridge has been designated a Grade II listing “building” by Historic England. The name, however, indicates a much older crossing of the river for the etymologists tell us the name has Old Engilsh roots. Deop means deep, hylr is a pool and, of course, bryc is a bridge. So a bridge by the deep pool, a name that survived the subsequent Scandinavian migrations. But what sort of bridge would it have been? And where was it going? I can imagine a crossing starting with a fallen tree trunk spanning the river to a farmstead on the other side. Livestock would surely have forded the river. Maybe later, once the tree had rotted, a clapper bridge would have been constructed as a replacement. Or perhaps this was a major route west out of the dale joining up with the ancient track Ernaldsti travelling south from Guisborough.
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