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Ladykirk and Norham Bridge

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Ladykirk & Norham Bridge
Location Map ( geo)
Cameraicon.png View gallery (1)
Between Ladykirk & Norham
Northumberland • Berwickshire
Highway Authority
Northumberland • Scottish Borders
Opening Date
Additional Information
List No:  1042217  (Grade II)
List No:  LB8352  (Cat B)
Bridge Type:  Arch Bridge
Width:  4.3m (14 ft 1 in)
Max Span:  27m (88 ft 7 in)
On road(s)
The bridge over the border

Ladykirk & Norham Bridge crosses the Scottish - English border, which at this point follows the River Tweed. It carries the B6470, which runs between the two villages of Ladykirk and Norham that give the bridge its name. Despite having four arches, the roadway across the bridge still rises to a slight crest at the centre, which is flanked by two massive semi-circular refuges. This was perhaps a symbolic gesture indicating the border between the two countries. This refuges rises up the substantial pier, beginning as a cutwater, although the tip of Canny Island now surrounds this pier. The other two piers also stand in the riverbed, but have smaller triangular cutwaters which are chamfered off at the arch springs. Shallow pilasters then rise up to the parapet, which is slightly overhanging with a toothed cornice below it at road level. The two outer arches are actually slightly smaller than the two central arches, although it is difficult to appreciate this from the riverbanks. This helps to explain the slight rise in the centre of the roadway.

The roadway itself is a narrow S2, wide enough for two cars to pass with care, but in practice traffic tends to give way to oncoming vehicles. There are no pavements except the paved refuges at the centre. The parapets rise up as plain ashlar walls without interruption across the whole bridge. However, over the abutments they step up two courses, and dogleg out to a curved wing wall which terminates with an octagonal drum pier. Due to the different heights of the riverbanks, these seem particularly tall on the English side of the river.

The bridge is one of only three bridges to cross the Tweed while it forms the border, and is the newest of the three having been built in 1887. It replaced an earlier timber twin truss arch bridge which had been erected in 1838/9 and restored in 1852, but was once more in need of major repairs, which led to its replacement. The old bridge also had stone piers, but it appears that it remained in use during the construction of its replacement. The unusual aspect of this timber bridge is that it appears to have used an early form of lamination to form the structure, with lots of small pieces of timber fixed together to form longer members. The longest piece of timber in the trusses was apparently 28 feet long, while the spans were 190 feet in total.

Ladykirk and Norham Bridge
Related Pictures
View gallery (1)
Ladykirk & Norham Border Bridge - Geograph - 301229.jpg
Crossings of the River Tweed and tributaries
River TweedMerlindale Bridge • Crownhead Bridge • Manor Bridge • Tweed Bridge (Peebles) • Innerleithen Bridge • Ashestiel Bridge • Yair Bridge • Tweed Bridge (Galashiels) • Galafoot Bridge • Melrose Bridge • Drygrange Bridge • Mertoun Bridge • Kelso Bridge • Hunters Bridge • Coldstream Bridge • Ladykirk & Norham Bridge • Union Bridge • Berwick Bypass Bridge • Royal Tweed Bridge • Berwick Bridge
River TillTwizel Bridge • Twizel New Bridge • Heatherslaw Bridge • Ford Bridge • Redscar Bridge • Doddington Bridge • Weetwood Bridge • Fowberry Bridge • Chatton Bridge
Leader WaterGaladean Bridge
Gala WaterKilcoulter Bridge • Stow Bridge • Bowland Bridge • Hunters Bridge • George Craig Bridge
Ettrick WaterEttrick Bridge • Carterhaugh Bridge • Selkirk Bridge • Ettrick Bridge (Lindean)
Yarrow WaterYarrow Bridge • Broadmeadows Bridge • Generals Bridge
Lyne WaterRomanno Bridge • Newlands Bridge • Tarth Bridge • Five Mile Bridge • Beggarpath Bridge • Lynesmill Bridge

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