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Banff Bridge

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Banff Bridge
Location Map ( geo)
Banff Bridge - Geograph - 1762738.jpg
Cameraicon.png View gallery (5)
County
Aberdeenshire
Highway Authority
Aberdeenshire
Opening Date
1779, 1881
On road(s)
A98

Banff Bridge carries the A98 across the River Deveron between the coastal towns of Banff and Macduff. The bridge is a 7 arch stone structure which was widened on both sides in 1881 but still carries a comparatively narrow roadway between narrow pavements. The first bridge across the Deveron here was built in 1765, but only lasted three years. The ferry was resumed, but it too succumbed to a storm, and so the new bridge was built. Apparently taking 7 years to build, the stone was quarried locally, which suggests some problems along the way!

The 7 arches of the bridge rise to the centre which is the largest arch, and this gives the road a very gentle hump in the middle. When the bridge was widened, some of the decorative stonework was removed from the parapets and spandrels of the original structure and re-used on the new parapets. This includes the blind occuli in the spandrels. The original cutwaters remain, with very slim 'pilasters' supporting the new arches which are presumably also tied firmly into the original structure.

In January 2024 a report to Aberdeenshire Council placed Banff Bridge as the top priority for bridge work after serious structural issues were discovered during investigations. Essential scour remedial and preventative works were required immediately to safeguard the bridge.

Junction

As soon as the A98 touches down on the east bank of the river, it swings sharply northwards, to follow the river below the steep slope of the Hill of Doune. Heading off to the south along the river bank is the A947 which terminates here after a long cross country journey from Bucksburn in the suburbs of Aberdeen. The two roads meet at a simple give way T junction, although there is enough room to allow large vehicles to manoeuvre safely. Despite the turn, the A98 has priority.

Folk song

The song "MacPherson's Rant" commemorates the hanging in Banff of an outlaw, James MacPherson, in 1700, with words to a tune written by MacPherson himself. According to the song, a messenger was seen crossing the bridge with a reprieve, but the Laird ordered the town clock to be put forward so that MacPherson could be hanged at the appointed time of 12 o'clock before the messenger arrived. As the first Banff Bridge wasn't built until 65 years later, it is uncertain whether this is poetic licence or refers to another bridge further upstream, perhaps the Bridge of Alvah.

Routes

Route To Notes

A98

Banff, Inverness (A96)

A98

Macduff, Fraserburgh

A947

Turriff, Aberdeen




Banff Bridge
Related Pictures
View gallery (5)
Banff Bridge - Geograph - 1762738.jpgA98 Deveron Bridge - Coppermine - 9298.jpgA98 Deveron Bridge - Coppermine - 9300.jpgA98 A947 junction - Coppermine - 9296.jpgA98 Deveron Bridge - Coppermine - 9301.jpg
Crossings of the River Deveron and Tributaries
River DeveronBridge of Kings Ford • Blackwater Bridge (Cabrach) • Cairnford Bridge • Milton Bridge (Huntly) • Bridge of Gibston • Milltown of Rothiemay Bridge • Bridge of Marnoch • Deveron Bridge • Banff Bridge
River IslaBridge of Isla (Rothiemay) • Bridge of Isla (Newmill) • Union Bridge (Keith) • Bridge of Maisley • Bridge of Auchindachy
River BogieHuntly Bridge (Huntly) • Bleachfield Bridge • Kirkney Bridge • Gartly Bridge


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