an 18th century military road in the scottish highlands and 3
of its bridges
This web site documents and celebrates the project to stabilise and
preserve three 18th century bridges on a military road on the Candacraig
Estate in Aberdeenshire. The Project was started in the late 1990s under
the auspices of Gordon Enterprise Trust (now amalgamated into Enterprise
North East Trust) involving several funding partners and advisors,
see links & credits. the
total cost of the project being about £230,000.
Click on the hotspot to see a large scale map of
the bridges' location
Moving A Bridge
On 15th November 1999, a small but very
unusual engineering feat was performed on a centuries old bridge in The
Highlands of Scotland. Built under the command of Major William Caulfeild,
it had withstood nearly 250 years of floods and the harsh winter weather
but slowly the foundations on one bank had been moved nearly one metre
downstream, bending the rigid stone structure along its length – and yet it
had stood, a tribute to the work of the original builders. The bridge
needed to be restored. One might think that this movement would have
inevitably destroyed it, but it was not taken down and rebuilt. Instead,
Peter Stephen & Partners, the consultant engineers, jacked up the bridge
and moved it bodily back into position!
The bridge is one of three being restored along the line of a road built
by the British army in the 18th century. It has been an expensive
operation but the historic interest of these bridges lies in more than
just their physical structure!
The terrain traversed by the military road,
click to enlarge
Who Passed This Way?
Ancient bridges are portals of history. If,
over the centuries, you were able to watch who passed over the bridges or
forded the streams close by to where they stand, and see the “tramp of
time”, the people would tell you a story. It would be a story of what
happened here and in the wider Scotland; stories of historical changes
similar to those in many other parts of the world; in distant history and
happening today in South America, Asia, Africa and elsewhere. What do these
stories tell you about your history?
Delavine Technical Paper "The Consolidation of an 18th Century
Masonry Arch Bridge on the Old Military Road at Corgarff, Aberdeenshire,
Scotland, UK." - John D. Addison, Peter Stephen & Partners and Daniela Dobrescu-Parr,
The Morrison Partnership.