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Gairnshiel Bridge

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Gairnshiel Bridge
Location Map ( geo)
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From:  Tomintoul
To:  Ballater
Gairnshiel Lodge
Highway Authority
Opening Date
Additional Information
Bridge Type:  Arch Bridge
Engineer:  Major William Caulfeild
On road(s)
Crossings related to the A939

The bridge over the River Gairn at Gairnshiel Lodge was constructed as part of the Military Road from Braemar to Fort George, Inverness, built by Major Caulfeild in 1753. It is a typical, and pretty original looking example of the bridges constructed by Caulfeild on the military roads that criss-crossed the Highlands. The bridge is a very basic hump-backed single arch span with no adornment or ornamentation. Then again, the remote setting of beautiful mountainous country could never be matched so why bother?!

Today the bridge is a particularly narrow, humped structure which is only wide enough for one-way traffic. It is not, however, controlled by lights nor even by give way marks, but traffic is normally careful enough to pause and check for traffic on the far side before progressing over the bridge. There is no visibility of oncoming traffic once an ascent of the hump is started. The severity of the hump also means that long and articulated vehicles are not able to cross, due to the risk of grounding. Again, however, there is no official signed prohibition in place, just warning signs.


A short distance to the south of the bridge, the A939 meets the B976 at a T junction. Despite the layout of the junction, the A939 continues through a sharp right angle bend, with the B road meeting at the apex. The B976 follows the old route of the A939 towards Braemar, whilst the A939 now turns south east towards Ballater, although neither route reaches those destinations, the A93 making the final connection.


Route To Notes




Ballater, Aberdeen (A93) Former B972


Crathie, Braemar (A93) Former A939

Gairnshiel Bridge
Related Pictures
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