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Balmoral Bridge
Braemar, Aberdeenshire
associated engineer
Isambard Kingdom Brunel
date  1857
era  Victorian  |  category  Bridge  |  reference  NO262949
ICE reference number  HEW 1070
Commissioned by the Royal Family as part of improvements to the Balmoral Estate, the final appearance of this austere, plate-girder bridge across the River Dee did not entirely meet their approval.
However, it is probably the first of its kind in Scotland and is a superior work of engineering, built to support a load of 86 tons and still sufficient to bear the weight of modern traffic.
Brunel incorporated five roller bearings beneath the mounted ends of the girders at the east end of the bridge, and an innovative girder section designed to resist buckling.
The 18ft high abutments are made of coursed granite and between them, two horizontal girders of 130ft each in length span 124ft of water. A pattern of diagonal webplates along the parapets, punctuated with cross-beams every 15ft, provides the sole decorative element.
The original longitudinal pine decking was replaced in 1971.
Ironwork: R Brotherhood, Chippenham, Wiltshire
Three of four makers' plates remain.
reference sources   HighBr
Location

Balmoral Bridge

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