Coramba Village Welcome Sign

“THERE IS NOTHING in machinery, there is nothing in embankments and railways and iron bridges and engineering devices to oblige them to be ugly. Ugliness is the measure of imperfection.” H. G. Wells

When the village of Coramba in north-east New South Wales wanted an entrance sign that would display something distinctive about their community, they chose a well-loved local landmark – the Coramba Bridge. One of the 105 bridges designed by Percy Allan and constructed between 1894 and 1929, the bridge, which spans the Orara River, has understandably been of historic value to many in the area. A Conservation Management Plan for the Bridge and the remains of the adjacent butter factory was prepared for Coffs Harbour Council, but it has nevertheless been slated for demolition, along with almost all of the original bridges, of which only 20 remain in NSW, with 10 listed on the State Heritage Register.

When Allan first introduced his new design, it featured iron vertical rods with timber bottom chords. All timber parts were assembled from relatively smaller and shorter sizes, spliced and laid parallel in pairs and held together by spacer timber blocks. In this way, rainwater could fall through, as well as allowing easy access for painting and increasing strength.

Copying from photographs, the bridge was depicted on the sign as a simple, stylized add on, boldly capturing the bridge’s features, and set in front of a hand painted backdrop of trees and sky. The main text was hand carved and gilded with 23kt gold leaf, while the smaller text was carved and painted.

Carved & Gilded / Painted
Sculpted Add on / Flat Painted
Sign Size
45 " x 25 "