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Sun September 26 2021

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Forth Ports to repair historic swing bridge

7 Sep Scotland’s largest counterweighted swing bridge is to be fully repaired under a phased programme of specialist works.

Forth Ports has announced plans to conserve the Category A-listed Victoria Swing Bridge located at the Port of Leith and create a useable space for the local community.

The plans are outlined in a listed building consent application, which has been lodged with City of Edinburgh Council. The proposed repair programme is to be carried out in phases and includes:

  • full refurbishment of the northern and southern walkways;
  • re-decking the central carriage way;
  • replacement of the decked turning circle areas;
  • a full repair and repaint of metalwork on the bridge.

The Victoria Swing Bridge was designed by Alexander Rendel and opened in 1874 to provide a road route for the port following the completion of construction of Albert Dock in 1869. The bridge was originally B listed but was upgraded to an A listing in 2014.

It is constructed of riveted wrought iron, timber and steel and originally carried a double rail track along its central deck, providing access for both trains and road vehicles. It features pedestrian walkways on either side.

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The refurbishment of the north and south pedestrian walkways is expected to be undertaken this year, with the remaining work due to be carried out in 2022.

Charles Hammond, group chief executive at Forth Ports, said: “The Victoria Swing Bridge is a well kent sight in Leith and it is an important and rare surviving example of our heritage. The plans we have submitted to the Council have been well thought through and will ensure that the repairs are appropriate for the conservation of this important landmark.

“We want to also create a useable space for the local community and we hope that once the bridge has been restored, people will be able to enjoy this historic space.”

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MPU
MPU

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