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Latitude: 55.8757 / 55°52'32"N
Longitude: -2.9763 / 2°58'34"W
OS Eastings: 339010
OS Northings: 665161
OS Grid: NT390651
Mapcode National: GBR 70NH.FK
Mapcode Global: WH7V7.7KYY
Entry Name: Oxenfoord Policies, Cranstoun Dean Bridge
Listing Date: 26 February 2003
Source: Historic Scotland
Source ID: 396655
Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB49103
Building Class: Cultural
Electoral Ward: Midlothian East
Traditional County: Midlothian
Charles Abercromby, 1805. High single-span bridge flanked by classical pilasters with parapet and curved wing-walls. Dressed and droved yellow sandstone ashlar with some red sandstone.
S & N (PRINCIPAL) ELEVATIONS: single semi-circular span, with ashlar voussoirs and moulded impost course; moulded dentil course with parapet above, slab coping to all. Pilasters and slightly projecting support walls to flanks of span with square details to courses, curved wing walls to each side. To S side, carved stones in right pilaster inscribed "JAMES CLERK of chesterhall Convenor, Cha Abercromby Edin arch, 1805". To N side, left wing wall terminated in buttress (supporting high adjoining bank).
This bridge, crossing the Cranston Dene, is on the now unused drive leading from Oxenfoord Castle to the South Lodge (both listed separately). The bridge was built at the same time as its sister bridge, the Tyne Bridge (listed separately) and found near the Lion's Gate entrance to Preston Hall. They were built in 1805, as part of improvements to the road structure in Midlothian. It was the work of the Convenor of Roads and Highways - James Clerk, Esq of Chester Hall (a now demolished mansion / country house abutting the Oxenfoord policies to the west of the main road, near what is now called Chester Hill or Edgehead). The architect for the scheme was Charles Abercromby of Edinburgh. The height of its single arch is 29ft but it has an overall "altitude" of 38ft to the ridge of the parapet. The straight portion of the parapet measures 38ft, with flanking walls of 16ft each. Although sister bridges, the Cranstoun Dene Bridge was described (in 1907) as being "much superior in architectural design to the Tyne Bridge". Cranstoun as a village ceased to exist, as did its earlier church - which was rebuilt in the early 1800s in it current position. This bridge was used to carry the south drive for Oxenfoord Castle to the main road. The Lothian Bridge, by Thomas Telford, became the most prominent bridge over the Tyne in the area and formed an early by-pass for the estates. That bridge still carries the main A68 road whilst these two bridges, although admired at their time of construction, have become largely forgotten.
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