These words describe the disastrous floods of 1828 which not only swept away this bridge, but many others along the Esk valley. Because of the topography of the valley, particularly it's trough like shape and the various dales ( Westerdale, Danbydale, Glaisdale etc.) which feed into it, the water level is prone to quickly rise and equally quickly subside.
This postcard shows a photograph of Ruswarp Bridge sometime before the floods of 1930, when on 23rd of July the waters rose to 5ft 2in in the upper room of The Bridge Inn. This bridge was also washed away during that terrible downpour when approximately 80 million tons of water were fed into the Esk valley in less than three days.
This of course is the imposing and reassuringly sturdy looking iron bridge spanning the Esk at Ruswarp today. Reputedly made from iron supplied by the same company that supplied the iron for the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
The postcards are from the collection of Mark Lines.
Additional information from Ruswarp, A Brief History by Alan Whitworth,(Culva House Publications 2004)
The bridge during the 1930 floods