Unfortunately for the inhabitants of Putney, it was a toll bridge, with a toll-collector at each side "with hats, and gowns of good substantial cloth of a deep blue colour, lined with blue shalloon, and carried staves with brass or copper heads". If you wanted to cross, you had to pay.
People were outraged - London Bridge was free, after all! Why should Putney Bridge be different? In 1730, bells had to be installed at each side of the bridge, so that one toll-collector could ring the other for help if people tried to barge past without paying.