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Ruthrieston Pack Bridge, Riverside Drive, Aberdeen

A Category B Listed Building in Aberdeen, Aberdeen

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Latitude: 57.1257 / 57°7'32"N

Longitude: -2.1181 / 2°7'5"W

OS Eastings: 392945

OS Northings: 803872

OS Grid: NJ929038

Mapcode National: GBR S8M.QB

Mapcode Global: WH9QX.F5L5

Plus Code: 9C9V4VGJ+7P

Entry Name: Ruthrieston Pack Bridge, Riverside Drive, Aberdeen

Listing Name: Riverside Drive, Ruthrieston Pack Bridge over Ruthrieston Burn

Listing Date: 12 January 1967

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 354517

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB20071

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Aberdeen

County: Aberdeen

Town: Aberdeen

Electoral Ward: Torry/Ferryhill

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

Tagged with: Packhorse bridge

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Dated 1693; moved 35 yards E in 1923. 3-span, hump-back, round-arched bridge over tributary to River Dee. Coursed lightly tooled granite, with granite arch-rings; cobbled road. Splayed wing walls. Parapet stepped-up to centre, added 1923. Cutwaters surmounted by 2 tooled coats of arms to E; panel reading "ERECTED IN 1693 35 YARDS WEST OF THIS SITE - RE-ERECTED HERE IN 1923" to W; panel with Latin inscription to inside E parapet.

Statement of Interest

Ruthrieston Pack Bridge, which is the only surviving example of a pack horse bridge in this area of Scotland, was described by Fraser as an "exceedingly well built bridge, of dressed granite" (THE BRIDGE OF DEE, p15). It would appear that the bridge was first mentioned in the Town Council Minutes in 1541 as the "blind bryg", however what became of this bridge is not known. The present bridge was built with stones from the quarry in Hill of Pitfoddels over 150 years later. Despite being moved in 1923, Ruthrieston Pack Bridge survives in good condition. The parapet is a later addition, the original parapets being long gone even in 1910. The main loss is the weathering of the two coats of arms. That to the left is of Aberdeen City, with 3 towers supported by 2 leopards, and the motto "Bon Accord"; while that to the right belongs to Robert Cruickshank of Banchory (Devenick), who was provost at the time the bridge was built, and added his coat of arms without the Council's permission. In 1698 when he ceased to be provost the Council demanded the stone be removed and that Cruickshank should pay for a new stone, on which would be a Latin inscription. When Cruickshank refused to pay his stone was turned round and the inscription carved on the reverse. It was not until the bridge was repaired in 1877 that the stone was turned back to display the coat of arms. In 1796, the road layout changed and traffic was diverted from the bridge.

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