|When entering or leaving Southampton on
its western side and where the M271 motorway terminates there is a
large roundabout this is Redbridge and its bridge over the River Test
where it joins Southampton Water. Once a busy little village it is
now more or less swallowed up by Southampton. Here there are three
bridges, the railway, road and an old stone bridge that has buttress
type spaces for pedestrians to shelter from the fast galloping horse
pulling the mail coaches in days gone by. History tells us that there
has actually been a bridge over the river here since the 10th cneutry
IMAGES OF REDBRIDGE
When Cadwalla fought the Jutes after they had taken the Isle of Wight two of his sons escaped to the mainland and it was at the monastery at Redbridge that they were offered shelter. Cadwalla found out and demanded they be arrested and executed but the abbot pleaded for a delay until they were converted over to Christianity and the king agreed.
Today the village is a thriving little community with the Ship Inn being a favourite venue for busy commuters and office workers in the nearby business parks. The pub is not only well known for its good food and warm welcome but it has a skittle alley and is also used for private functions, There is a large Royal Mail depot here plus a timber yard and Anchor Inn which is in Test Lane that is practically hidden from view by the huge dual carriageway that crosses overhead carrying the speeding traffic from Southampton to the New Forest and Bournemouth or Salisbury.
The old Railway Cottages still remain and there is a good mixture of both old and new architecture from pretty little cottages to modern council flats. To get to the old bridge though one has to cross the busy dual carriageway or go by car into Totton and then turn round and come back, and in the summer it is a favourite spot for youngsters who take great delight as well as their life in their hands by jumping off of the huge road bridge into the river below. In 2005 a young lad did this and got into difficulties and not only was the inshore lifeboat called out but the coastguard helicopter as well.
Redbridge derives its name from hreutford in circa 730 and hreoford circa 1000 hreod brycge c 956 hreod bricge c1045 Rodbrige c 1086, Redbrigge c1222 and Rudbrigge c 1276. The Old English Hrēodbridycg meaning 'reed bridge' is the most favourable. The earlier name being 'reed ford' as there are still reed beds here that are harvested for use in thatching still today. (source "The Place-Names of Hampshire by Richard Coates, published by B. T. Batsford, London, ISBN 07134 5625 6)
One of the main trades of Redbridge was the production and exporting of Linseed oil.
Salisbury and Winchester