|Location Map ( geo)|
|Places related to the A944|
|Places related to the A980|
Alford is a small town on the south side of the River Don in the fertile Howe of Alford. The town is home to the Grampian Transport Museum, a holiday park, Ski Centre and Golf Course, making it a popular stop for tourists in this rural part of Aberdeenshire. The busy town centre also has a number of shops and services to serve the town, and the large rural hinterland, within which Alford is one of the largest settlements. Despite this, the town has little industry, and many of the housing estates are comparatively new. It is the surrounding farmland that helped develop the towns fortunes in the past.
The main road through Alford is the A944, which runs west from Aberdeen into Strath Don. There is no bypass for the town, so the A944 still runs along the main street of what was until fairly recently a one- street town. It meets the A980 on the west side of Alford, and then turns north to cross the historic Bridge of Alford over the Don, before following the river further west to meet the A97. A couple of miles to the east of the town, the B992 heads north over the hills to Insch, the A96 and beyond.
Lying to the west of Alford, the junction between the A980 and A944 was until recently a simple crossroads, with the A944 TOTSOing north, whilst the mainline was the A980 - A944 route into Alford. The fourth arm of the crossroads was an unclassified road south. Indeed, this unclassified road is part of the old military road built by Major Caulfeild, which continued north across the Bridge of Alford. This crossroads survives, but is no longer an important junction, the former A944 north being reduced to a track, and the A980 continuing a little further east.
In 2014, the A944 to the west of Alford was realigned, easing a bend with a new line south of the old one. This then sweeps round to the Bridge, bypassing the old crossroads, and removing the TOTSO. The A980 has therefore been extended slightly, and the road also realigned to meet the A944 at right angles. It is still a simple give-way T junction, however.
|Mossat, Kildrummy, Strathdon, Huntly (A97)||Highland Tourist Route|
|Aberdeen||Highland Tourist Route|
|Lumphanan, Torphins, Banchory||was B976|
|Keig, Insch, Cothiemuir Hill natural burial ground|