Road Trip To Falkirk and Fife: Pt 3 – The Upper Forth Crossings

Moving on from Falkirk, we were bound for the small county of Clackmannanshire, but to get there we had to cross the River Forth. The Forth Bridges themselves were further down at Edinburgh, so we took the other two Forth Bridges, and took a few trips over each before exploring the area…

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This view is taken from a hill in Clackmannan (as we explored the area later on). The bridge further up the river is the Kincardine Bridge which comes out in the small town of Kincardine.

The other bridge is the Clackmannanshire Bridge, which brings you into Clackmannanshire itself near to Clackmannan.

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Kincardine Bridge

My favourite of the two bridges is the Kincardine Bridge, built between 1932 and 1936. At the time the bridge was the nearest road crossing over the Forth to Edinburgh. The next bridge was upstream near Stirling. It wasn’t until around 30 years later that the Forth Road Bridge opened, so it was an important crossing.

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Designed by Sir Alexander Gibb & Partners, with Donald Watson, it runs for 822 metres, with the longest single span at 111 metres.

You see the centre section that is different to the rest, encased in a metal frame? This originally swung around on the centre column, to allow ships to run up the river to Alloa which maintained a small port. This continued until 1988, when it was permanently shut. It currently carries the A985 which comes from Dunfermline further along the river.

Both pictures were taken from the adjoining bridge…

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Clackmannanshire Bridge

The second bridge was constructed between 2006 and 2008, when it finally opened. The Kincardine Bridge was 70 years old by this point, so a new, more modern bridge was decided on to ease traffic flow, and it became a bypass for Kincardine to reduce congestion in the town.

It is by far the longer of the two, at 1.2 kilometres compared to 822 metres for the other bridge. Alex Salmond (Scottish First Minister) himself opened the bridge, which is carried by 25 support piers. This is now the main road over the Forth in the area, with the A876 running across it.

After exploring the two bridges, it was time to move on to Alloa, an the historic Alloa Tower…

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