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Location Map ( geo)
Cameraicon.png View gallery (29)
From:  Nairn (NH885566)
To:  Brackley (NH804517)
Via:  Cawdor
Distance:  8.7 miles (14 km)
Meets:  A96, B9091, B9101, B9091, B9006
Former Number(s):  A96
Highway Authorities


Traditional Counties

Inverness-shire • Nairnshire

Route outline (key)
B9090 Nairn - Brackley

The B9090 is a road which few people will ever drive end to end, although part of it is a useful alternative to the A96 from Nairn to Inverness.


White Bridge

The route starts at traffic lights on the A96 St Ninian Road in Nairn and initially follows a one-way loop along the High Street and Leopold Street which returns to the A96 Academy Street. The OS also currently include Gordon Street as part of the route, and while it does have priority at the junction with the High Street, there is no other evidence to confirm that this street has been added to the B9090. However, at the junction of the High Street and Leopold Street, the former continues southwards, at an effective TOTSO as a two-way road, and this is the mainline of the B9090. High Street becomes Cawdor Road as the route works its way out of town, passing the railway station where it goes under the railway line. The B9091 turns right immediately afterwards and follows a shorter route to Clephanton.

Shortly after passing the hospital, fields replaced houses first on one side of the road, then the other, as the route follows the River Nairn south west. At Howford it turns sharp left and drops down to cross the River on Howford Bridge, before turning sharply to the right and climbing up through woodland to meet the B9101. The junction is a TOTSO, where the B9090 turns right onto a road which acts as a Nairn Bypass for Moray traffic heading into Inverness. It continues through open arable fields and the small settlement of Brackla, with a handful of houses and a distillery, is quickly passed. A couple of sharper turns then bring the route into Cawdor, home of the castle linked by Shakespeare with Macbeth. From the TOTSO with B9101, although the road has good straight sections, it has virtually no verges, with walls or hedges restricting visibility at the bends, so is limited to 50mph (dropping to 30mph through Brackla), as far as Cawdor. Most of the village is south of the road, which then drops back to the River Nairn, passing the barely noticeable site of a wartime airfield, now almost entirely restored to farmland.

A sharp right turn then leads on to a straight, part of the military road to Fort George, but shortened by a diversion to the replacement White Bridge over the river, built in 2018. A short climb up the hill brings the road to Clephanton, a tight crossroads crowded with houses, where the B9091 crosses. Turning left here leads to the Culloden area of Inverness, making it a busy road. The B9090 meanwhile, continues ahead with priority, heading north west on the military road line and virtually straight. Shortly before reaching the A96 once more, the B9006 joins from the left, and so the B9090 ends at a TOTSO almost within sight of the road it started on.


First classified in around 1924/5, the route remains little changed to this day. However, as depicted on the 1926 Michelin Map, the route continued west from Clephanton to meet the B9006 at Croy, with the B9091 forming the short link north towards the A96. This could be an error, but probably shows the original line, which had already changed by 1932, when the current routes are shown on the OS Ten Mile Map. More recently, the route has, obviously, been widened and some bends improved to allow for modern traffic levels, but the only major change is in Nairn, where the High Street, and indeed Leopold Street, are the original line of the A96 through town. (The 1922 MoT map actually shows the A96 taking its present route through Nairn, but this is probably an error as King Street would have been much narrower then, and old photographs clearly show the main road curving into Leopold Street from the west.) The change, leading to the B9090 being extended, seems to have happened in the early 1960s, certainly between 1959 and 1964.

The bypass of Cawdor opened in 1938. Nairnshire Telegraph of 26 April 1938 reported that the new bridge and road was opened "last week". The bridge was to be constructed of reinforced concrete. Cost was £5,000.

The line at Clephanton has been skewed slightly westwards to give some visibility at the crossroads, and the straight north of there was widened in two stages. The first phase, in the late 1990s, was where it formed the boundary between Highland Council's Inverness and Nairn Areas (and previously between the two County Councils), and as the Nairn Area funded the widening, it had to be done on their (east) side. The widening was continued southwards to Clephanton in the late 2010s under a Timber Transport scheme.

Related Pictures
View gallery (29)
B9090 White Bridge realignment - new Nairn bridge road deck looking north.jpgB9090 White Bridge realignment - vehicle activated sign at SE end of new road.jpgB9090 White Bridge - old bridge closed south end.jpgB9090 Howford Bridge - close aerial from SW.jpgB9090 Howford Bridge - distant aerial from S.jpg
Other nearby roads
B9000 – B9099
B9000 • B9001 • B9002 • B9003 • B9004 • B9005 • B9006 • B9007 • B9008 • B9009 • B9010 • B9011 • B9012 • B9013 • B9014 • B9015 • B9016 • B9017 • B9018 • B9019
B9020 • B9021 • B9022 • B9023 • B9024 • B9025 • B9026 • B9027 • B9028 • B9029 • B9030 • B9031 • B9032 • B9033 • B9034 • B9035 • B9036 • B9037 • B9038 • B9039
B9040 • B9041 • B9042 • B9043 • B9044 • B9045 • B9046 • B9047 • B9048 • B9049 • B9050 • B9051 • B9052 • B9053 • B9054 • B9055 • B9056 • B9057 • B9058 • B9059
B9060 • B9061 • B9062 • B9063 • B9064 • B9065 • B9066 • B9067 • B9068 • B9069 • B9070 • B9071 • B9072 • B9073 • B9074 • B9075 • B9076 • B9077 • B9078 • B9079
B9080 • B9081 • B9082 • B9083 • B9084 • B9085 • B9086 • B9087 • B9088 • B9089 • B9090 • B9091 • B9092 • B9093 • B9094 • B9095 • B9096 • B9097 • B9098 • B9099
Earlier iterations: B9002(E) • B9002(W) • B9003 • B9005 • B9013 • B9014 • B9019 • B9038 • B9040 • B9049 • B9054
B9071 • B9076 • B9077 • B9078 • B9079 • B9080 • B9085 • B9093 • B9095 • B9098

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