|From:||Forfar bypass (N) (NO449536)|
|Distance:||13.2 miles (21.2 km)|
|Meets:||A90, A926, A932, B978, B9127, B961, A930, A92|
|Former Number(s):||A94, A958|
|Route outline (key)|
The B9128 is a cross-country road in south Angus.
The road starts at a LILO at the northern end of the A90 Forfar by-pass and heads south. This opening stretch of road was, before the opening of the by-pass, the A94. We follow a-mile long straight heading directly towards Forfar with excellent visibility along its entire length. At the end of the straight we pass the Forfar Golf Driving Range on the left and head over the old railway line to reach a mini roundabout where we join the A926 at the Zoar. We stay on the A926 for half a mile as we enter town on the Brechin Road. After negotiating one mini roundabout heading down the hill, we turn left at the next at the Stag Hotel to rejoin the B9128.
The road turns almost immediately left into Victoria Street, which heads straight, slightly uphill, for a quarter of a mile before reaching the TOTSO with North Street where we turn right. The traffic lights at the East Port are soon reached and we head straight on to the A932 for only a few yards before heading straight on at the mini-roundabout at which point the road becomes the B9128 for the rest of its length. Now on South Street, the road heads down into a dip and then up the short, steep climb up Easterbank Brae to the outskirts of the town, where the combination of a narrower road and parked cars usually make for a stuttering exit.
After a short, straight section out in the country there comes an awkward blind left-hand bend at Welton Corner, where caution needs to be exercised, with a group of houses on the left. A quick right-hander then follows and then it's uphill through the village of Kingsmuir. This is a straight 30mph run for around half a mile then we run back out into the country again, with Lownie Hill looming ahead on the left. Right at the foot of the hill the road bends right around a group of cottages with the minor road to Letham heading straight on. There have been improvements made to sight lines here but care still needs to be taken due to the combination of bend and junction. A twisty section then passes through the Cotton of Lownie farm before a very slow left-hand corner leads onto the mile-long straight leading to Craichie; this offers overtaking opportunities although a dip halfway along its length causes sight issues. The tiny village of Craichie is perched on a small hill, then after a right-hand bend we soon plunge down past Craichie Mill and a series of bends before heading uphill on a straight section past the farms at Tulloes and the junction on the right with the B978.
The road then climbs up towards its highest point with a tight right-hand bend awaiting near the top and a minor road heading straight on towards Carmyllie; heading in the opposite direction, a tremendous view northwards towards the mountains can be seen at this point. For the next couple of miles, as the road crosses the eastern part of the Sidlaw Hills, the scene is of wide vistas over open farmland. We pass the crossroads with the B9127 and continue southwards along an increasingly undulating journey until we reach the highest point shortly before the staggered junction with the B961, where things level out a bit; although we are now heading downhill, it is more gradual than the climb uphill was. A big dip in the road heralds the straight section alongside the Panmure Estate where old, gnarled trees line both sides. The last mile or so passes the farms of Pitlivie and Auchrennie before a right-hand bend reveals the village of Muirdrum and a crossroads on the old route of the A92. Some maps claim the B9128 ends here , whilst other maps extend our road slightly further to a GSJ on the present A92. Either way, the A930 to Carnoustie lies straight ahead.
The road south of Forfar was originally classified as the B963 in 1922 and was quickly upgraded to become the A958 in the late 1920s. At a similar time, the B9128 number was allocated to a short link in Forfar town centre; whilst this is not shown on the 1932 map it can be presumed that it was simply too short to show. From the A932 East High Street the road headed north along North Street before turning west along Market Street to reach the A926 Brechin Road, although later maps seem to indicate Don Street gained the B9128 number as well.
From these humble beginnings, the B9128 was to grow substantially. When the A958 route was downgraded to B road status once more, the B9128 number was extended along it, the B963 number already having been reassigned. And also, with the A94, now A90, Forfar Bypass being built, the former route of the A94 north out of town also became part of the B9128. To further complicate matters, the original town-centre route has also been changed, now following Victoria Street to meet the A926. So, while the B9128 is now some 13 miles or more long, only a few hundred yards remain of the route originally given that number in the late 1920s!