|From:||Victoria Bridge, Fort William (NN122758)|
|Distance:||1.8 miles (2.9 km)|
|Route outline (key)|
Starting from a junction situated some 150 m beyond the northern end of the Victoria Bridge crossing of the River Lochy, the road follows the right bank of that river southwest and west along Kilmallie Road through Lochyside, before curving northwestward to parallel the shoreline of Loch Linnhe at Caol. At the far end of the village we meet the Caledonian Canal, and here the road turns more sharply to the right to complete its journey by running northeastward to follow the canal. After going over a level crossing by Banavie station we rejoin the A830 close to the Neptune's Staircase locks.
The B8006 number was not used for this route until sometime between 1961 and 1967, from mapping evidence identified so far. It seems probable that the number was allocated around the time that there was a major upgrade of the A830 across the Blar Mor from Lochybridge to Banavie which was completed in the mid-late 1960s. The realignment of the junctions at either end of the B8006, as described below, occurred later still.
The old junction at Lochybridge lay a lot closer to the bridge, with the road having continued straight ahead along the riverbank to meet the A830. However, when the bridge was rebuilt and widened in the 1960s the junction was also realigned, with the road being swept westwards around the (yet to be built) Farmfoods supermarket building, so that it meets the A830 about halfway between the bridge and the Camaghael junction, itself earlier realigned when Lochaber High School was built. The old B8006 road line is now a dead end serving a couple of houses.
The junction at Banavie has also been realigned due to meeting the A830 too close to a bridge, this time the Canal Swing Bridge at the foot of the Neptune's Staircase Locks. However, the history at this end is even more complicated, with the A830 itself having been realigned. This main road originally ran in a straight line across the Blàr Mòr, crossing the canal over the third lock on the staircase. However, in the 1930s the current bridge was built, leaving a severe dogleg in the A830. This was ironed out in the 1960s with a new line for the A830, and the new junction was built soon after. The old road crossed at the other end of the platforms for Banavie Station and is still partly used as access for the small industrial estate. The rest is now a footpath. The delay with this realignment seems to be related to the branch line to the canal, which is still shown as extant on the 1967 map, despite having been out of use since 1951.