Joe Hendren

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Travels: Edinburgh

Forth Rail Bridge

Saturday December 28, 2002

Had a relaxing day today. I caught the train from Edinburgh to North Queensferry to see the famous rail bridge over the Firth of Forth. I planned to go over the bridge on the train and then make my way back to South Queensferry in order to check out the museum and old town there. 

The Forth Rail Bridge was constructed in 1890 and was at the time of its opening the biggest bridge in the world. The Forth Road Bridge, constructed in 1964 is slightly shorter at a mile and a half long. Sights of North and South Queensferry are dominated by the bridges, standing on either side of the historical part of each of the towns.

After alighting from the train in North Queensferry I walked towards the Road Bridge hoping that I would end up in the central part of town, only to find that I had to weave my way towards the road bridge via roads winding along the shoreline. Passed some quite nice old buildings on the way, some dating from the 17th Century. I then started to cross the Forth Estuary, not in a fashion that would confirm any divinity but on the road bridge instead. While walking a mile and a half on one structure seems a long way, I quite enjoyed the trek as it allowed me to get some good photos of the rail bridge to the east. Although the Bridge appeared to be exposed to winds, I encountered very little moving air at all, which was a pleasant surprise. 

I then wandered into the historic town of South Queensferry and had a look at the Museum covering the construction of the bridges and the history of the local area. The museum seemed like a jumble collection from somebody's attic (there was even a small sign asking local people to have a look in their own attics for exhibits).

There is not much else in South Queensferry but on the positive side it is quiet and peaceful. It was quite a hike back from the South Queensferry town to the nearest railway station, Dalmeny but with the sun lighting the winter sky the distance did not seem a burden at all. While there was no heat to warm the face, it was one of the nicest days weatherwise I have experienced in Scotland. In summer I imagine it would be very pleasant.

Some pictures of Queensferry and the Bridges