The first recorded bridge at Cenarth is mentioned by Giraldus Cambrensis when he visited the
village in 1188 in the company of the Archbishop of Canterbury, recruiting men for the Second
Crusade. An oil painting on wood in the possession of the Fitzwilliam family depicts a later
bridge at Cenarth, the precursor of the present one. Much shorter, it dropped on the flat shelf
of rock where the cart ruts could once be seen.
But when was the present bridge built? The cylindrical holes in the present bridge provided a clue
that enabled one to make an informed guess. The mid-Eighteenth Century saw a rapid growth of wheeled
traffic and a consequent spate of bridge building.