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Dunblane Bridge

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Dunblane Bridge
Location Map ( geo)
Cameraicon.png View gallery (1)
From:  Stirling Road
To:  High Street
Highway Authority
Opening Date
1410, 1734, 1849, 1927, 1940
Additional Information
Bridge Type:  Arch Bridge
On road(s)
Crossings related to the B8033
The old Dunblane Bridge

Dunblane Bridge is one of the oldest bridges in Scotland, in part at least. It traces its origins back to 1410, when the Bishop of Dunblane had the bridge built across the River Allan to better connect his Cathedral to the south. This first bridge replaced a ford and was built out of yellow sandstone, but it is uncertain exactly how much of it survives in the current crossing. The bridge was reconstructed in 1734, although few details of what this entailed, or why it was done survive. However, it can be assumed that the yellow stonework of the current span date from this time or before. In 1849 the bridge was widened on the southern side with red stone, making it easy to identify the work carried out, and the final changes was the addition of the metal girder spans to carry pavements. In 2015, these were topped with the current stone piers supporting metal railing parapets, replacing the older stone balustrades. It is perhaps ironic that the bridge today carries a single lane of traffic with a roadway no wider than the original bridge of 1410 is likely to have had!

The structure itself is a single span stone arch across the river, spanning between massive stone abutments, which are built out into the river. The eastern abutment is believed to have also carried the old Nether Port - the gateway into the Burgh of Dunblane. Both abutments now have buildings in close proximity, meaning that the stonework is needed as much to support the buildings as the bridge. The arch stands high above the river, which has cut a shallow channel into the surrounding land at this point, although there is also some evidence that the land has been built up with the development of the town.

Today the bridge carries Stirling Road, the one-way southern loop of the B8064, which predominantly serves the town Station. However, back in 1922 when the roads were first classified, it was the A9 which crossed the bridge, reflecting the historical importance of this route through Dunblane. The process of bypassing the historic town centre had started in the late 1920s, or early 1930s, but at that stage it seems that the newly widened bridge was intended to remain as part of the route. However, by the end of the 1930s, a new bridge was planned, which opened in 1940, seeing the A9 finally removed from the town centre.

New Bridge

The new bridge, which was built to carry the A9 stands a short distance down stream of the historic Dunblane Bridge. As first built, it was a single arch concrete structure, faced in stone, carrying an S2 roadway. However, as traffic volumes grew rapidly after the war, the bridge, and road on either side was widened to take a dual carriageway in 1959. Dunblane has since been more thoroughly bypassed by the A9, and so like the old bridge, the new one now only carries the two lanes of traffic it was originally designed for, albeit still as a dual carriageway, with the inside lanes converted to parking places and cycle lanes.

Dunblane Bridge
Related Pictures
View gallery (1)
Dunblane Bridge - Geograph - 6384460.jpg
Crossings of the River Forth & Teith
River ForthCobleland Bridge • A81 Forth Bridge • Cardross Bridge • Poldar Bridge • Bridge of Frew • Gargunnock Bridge • Drip Bridge • M9 Forth Bridge • Stirling Bridges • Taylorton Bridge • Clackmannanshire Bridge • Kincardine Bridge • Queensferry Crossing • Forth Road Bridge
River TeithKilmahog Bridge • Callander Bridge • Doune Bridge
Allan WaterKinbuck Bridge • Dunblane Bridge • Bridge of Allan

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