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Crathie, Suspension Bridge

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Record Detail

  • Organisation
    RCAHMS
  • Alternative name(s)
    ASPENHOLM; EASTER BALMORAL; CRATHIE SUSPENSION BRIDGE; RIVER DEE; BALMORAL CASTLE POLICIES; BALMORAL ESTATE
  • Canmore ID
    31163
  • Site type
    SUSPENSION BRIDGE
  • Parish
    CRATHIE AND BRAEMAR
  • Council
    ABERDEENSHIRE
  • NGR
    NO 26599 94252
  • Latitude, longitude
    57.033501N, 3.211007W
  • Archeological notes
    NO29SE 8 26599 94252 Suspension Bridge [NAT] OS 1:10,000 map, 1972. Not to be confused with (successor) Crathie Plate-girder Bridge (NO 26210 94923), for which see NO29SE 10. For Balmoral Castle (NO 2550 9495) and related monuments, see NO29NE 15.00. (Location cited as NO 267 943). Suspension bridge, built 1834 by engineers J Justice Junior and Co, Dundee and 'renewed' c. 1885 by Blaikie Bros, Aberdeen, at the expense of Queen Victoria. An early example of a flat-link, chain-suspension bridge, with diagonal rod bracing and a wooden deck. The pylons are braced wrought-iron structures. Designed for vehicular traffic, but now used for foot passengers only. J R Hume 1977a. (Suspension bridge of John Justice type: location cited as NO 267 943). Built 1834 by John Justice and Co, engineers, and 'renewed' c. 1885 by Blaikie Bros. engineers, Aberdeen, at the expense of Queen Victoria. Wrought-iron pylons, flat-link chains (2 links wide), iron rod stay chains, deck frame and underbracing, wooden carriageway. Built as road bridge, now public footbridge. J R Hume 1977b. (Name cited as Crathie Suspension Bridge). Situated on the B976 public road half a mile E of Balmoral Castle (NO29NE 15.00), this is the earliest suspension bridge on Upper Deeside, having been built in 1834 and renewed in 1885 at the Queen's expense. Built by Justice Junior and Co. of Dundee, it was then the main way across the river to the castle, and so was made wide enough to take carriages. The extra width gives it an added charm. The abutments are solid with rounded cutwaters and a flood arch on each side under the shorebays. The chain is not, in this early and unorthodox example of a suspension bridge, a metal rope, but a succession of paired flat links. Four diagonal rods ray out from each tapering wrought-iron pylon. These continue below the deck to provide bracing, and below there are truss rods It is an unusual bridge by the man who was experimenting with suspension methods; he also built the bridge at Glenisla, Angus [Kirkton of Glenisla: NO26SW 8]. The extent of the renewal works (also by Blaike) in 1885 is unclear. G Nelson 1990. Crathie Suspension Bridge, 1834, J Justice Jr. Slender lattice pylons and wooden decking, partly renewed 1885, by Blaikie Bros; the original shuddering access to Balmoral. J Geddes 2001. This bridge carries a path or track across the River Dee between Aspenholm (to the N) and Easter Balmoral (to the S). It formerly gave access to Balmoral Castle (NO29NE 15.00) through the policies to the E. Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 4 January 2006.
  • Architectural notes
    Wide fat-link-chain suspension bridge with iron pylons on granite piers constructed in 1834 by J Justice Junior and Co Dundee. Partly renewed late 19th-century by Blaikie Brothers, engineers, Aberdeen. This site was recorded as part of the Listed Buildings Recording Programme (LBRP) for 2001-02. Information from RCAHMS (NMC), 2002.

Related material information

SCANNED IMAGES

  • 507584 (20/8/1976)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View of underside
  • 507582 (20/8/1976)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge Detail of link
  • 507580 (20/8/1976)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge General View
  • 507578 (20/8/1976)
    Crathie, Suspenion Bridge Detail of link
  • 507577 (20/8/1976)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge Detail of link
  • 507575 (20/8/1976)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View along length
  • 507573 (20/8/1976)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View along length of bridge
  • 454825 (1974)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View from upstream W bank
  • 443675 (1974)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View from upstream W bank
  • 443673 (1974)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View of S end of bridge from N
  • 443672 (1974)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View of N end of bridge looking N
  • 443671 (1974)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View from S end, looking N along axis
  • 1315264 (20/8/1951)
    River Dee and Sron Dubh, Balmoral Estate. Oblique aerial photograph taken facing south-west. This image has been produced from a print.
  • 1314713 (24/4/1948)
    Crathie and Creag a' Chlamhain, Balmoral Estate. Oblique aerial photograph taken facing south. This image has been produced from a print.
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    Detail of manufacturer's nameplate
  • 31163 (1903)
    Scanned image of Second Edition of the Ordnance Survey 6-inch map (Aberdeenshire, 1903, sheet xc), covering Glenmuick, Tullich and Glengairn also including Balmoral Castle, Crathie and Royal Lochnagar Distillery.
  • 769279 (24/7/2001)
    View looking along deck from north Digital image of E 15689 cn
  • 769278 (24/7/2001)
    General view looking along deck from north Digital image of E 15657 cn
  • 769277 (24/7/2001)
    View from west Digital image of E 15655 cn

MANUSCRIPTS

  • 31163 ()
    J R Hume Industrial/CBA cards. Filed under Aberdeenshire county, Crathie and Braemar parish, Suspension Road Bridge. Photograph noted. (See NMRS MS/749 entyr for Collection description)
  • 31163 ()
    J R Hume Industrial/CBA cards. Four photographs, filed under Aberdeenshire county, Crathie and Braemar parish, Suspension Bridge. Photographs noted. (See NMRS MS/749 entry for Collection description)
  • 31163 (1978)
    1 sheet: Map extract; 1 sheet: Drawings-Elevation; Section; Details; A70811, A70812 -black and white contact prints plus index sheet

PHOTOGRAPHS

  • 31163 (1974)
    View from SW.
  • 31163 (1974)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View of S end of bridge, looking S
  • 31163 (1974)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View of N end of bridge looking N
  • 31163 (1974)
    Crathie, Suspension Bridge View from S end, looking N along axis
  • 31163 (31/8/1979)
    Detail of underside of bridge.
  • 31163 (31/8/1979)
    General view from North end of bridge.
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    Detail of manufacturer's nameplate
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    Detail of manufacturer's nameplate
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    View looking along deck from north
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    View looking along deck from north
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    General view looking along deck from north
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    General view looking along deck from north
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    View from west
  • 31163 (24/7/2001)
    View from west

DIGITAL IMAGES

  • 1313831 (4/10/2012)
    General oblique aerial view of the Balmoral Castle Estate centred on the new golf course, taken from the NW.
  • 1313830 (4/10/2012)
    General oblique aerial view of the Balmoral Castle Estate centred on the new golf course, taken from the NNW.
  • 1313829 (4/10/2012)
    General oblique aerial view of the Balmoral Castle Estate centred on the new golf course, taken from the N.
  • 1313828 (4/10/2012)
    General oblique aerial view of the Balmoral Castle Estate centred on the new golf course, taken from the E.
  • 1313827 (4/10/2012)
    General oblique aerial view of the Balmoral Castle Estate centred on the new golf course, taken from the ESE.
  • 1313826 (4/10/2012)
    General oblique aerial view of the Balmoral Castle Estate centred on the new golf course, taken from the SE.
  • 1055383 (8/9/2006)
    Oblique aerial view centred on the suspension bridge, taken from the SE.
  • 1055382 (8/9/2006)
    Oblique aerial view centred on the suspension bridge, taken from the S.
  • 1055381 (8/9/2006)
    Oblique aerial view centred on the suspension bridge, taken from the WSW.

1st edition 6-inch maps

TitleDateOther parishes/counties
 Ordnance Survey six-inch to the mile, Aberdeenshire, Sheet XC1866

1st edition 25-inch maps

TitleDateOther parishes/counties
 Ordnance Survey 25 inch to the mile Aberdeen, Sheet 090.111866
 Ordnance Survey 25 inch to the mile Aberdeen, Sheet 090.111866