|Crossings related to the A862|
|Caledonian Canal Swing Bridges • Lovat Bridge|
|Crossings related to the Moray Firth Tourist Route|
|Black Bridge (Lairg) • Caledonian Canal Swing Bridges • Friars Bridge • Lovat Bridge|
Conon Bridge was effectively founded after the construction of a bridge across the River Conon in 1809 by Thomas Telford in his role with the Commission for roads and bridges in the Highlands.
The old bridge
Whilst the old bridge may have been demolished 40 years ago, there are still some hints of it in the village. It was sited slightly further upstream to the current crossing, and was at right angles to the river banks, unlike the modern skewed structure. The south eastern end landed in the trees immediately next to the road, while the north western end can still be found in the turning bay at the end of Wrightfield Park. Indeed, the cottage here may even suggest that the bridge was originally tolled. For clarity, the modern pipe-bridge lies a little further upstream again.
It appears that Telford's bridge was a five-arch stone structure, with a narrow carriageway which took 3 years to build.
The current bridge
The new bridge across the Conon was opened in 1969, and was designed to carry the heavy traffic levels of the A9 as it headed north. Obviously, since the opening of the Kessock Bridge in 1982 the A9 has been re-routed to the east, leaving the much quieter traffic of the A862 to use the bridge.
The bridge itself is a 3-span steel girder bridge with concrete deck. The two intermediate concrete piers stand in the water of the main river channel. Perhaps ironically, this modern bridge only needed to serve for 13 years, and has now been bypassed by the new bridge further east that carries the A835. The A9 is even further east again on the Cromarty Bridge.