This month I am back to old haunts. When I was working on Wade’s bridge in Aberfeldy I regularly had to drive a landrover and trailer from Dundee or Newtyle to Aberfeldy. I tried lots of different routes but the one over Kinclaven became the favourite. In those days I never had time to stop and look. In the summer of 2018 I managed. It is a modern bridge. There was a ferry here until into the 1900s. If you look at the map link you will see there is also a (much older) bridge over the Isla adjacent but I gave up on trying to get an photographs there.
Four centred arches were popular in Tudor times and were used by Brunel on the GWR through Bath but this is the first modern one I have seen.
As close as I could get to a true elevation. That is really a very flat arch.
A view from a narrower angle begins to raise some questions.
Which questions are emphasised here but first to note that with such a flat arch, rotation at the abutment (and a crack) is to be expected.
And there is a similar crack at the pier.
From close to, the construction becomes clear. Precast concrete voussoirs and mass concrete core. Note the hinge and slight slip here.
Not so bright on the other side but the hinge is still visible.
A closer look shows the nature of the deformation. The hinge in the core is in a different place from that in the voussoirs.
And looking from beneath, there is the hinge on the far side, clearly demarcated in white lime.
I think that the main thing to take from this is that you can make a very presentable mass concrete arch. The stone spandrel walls and stone faced piers help but that is actually easy enough even in the modern world. How many concrete bridges built in the last 50 years will look as good as this at 100.
There is an old photo of the bridge here, and an indication of the date as 1903-05.
And here is the ferry, chain driven obviously.
And if you go to look, don’t forget the famous hedge at Meikleour ( pronounced Muckloor) just around the corner. I fear that trimming it has gone by the board in recent years.