Overtoun Bridge :: Shared Description

The bridge is located beside Overtoun House, and crosses the gorge of the Overtoun Burn. It was built by H.E.Milner for James White in 1895. See the listed building report LinkExternal link (at Historic Environment Scotland) for further details. For Overtoun House itself, see LinkExternal link

The following description of the bridge (which gives its dimensions) is taken from the Lennox Herald issue of June 15th 1895, where an account is given of the official opening of the Avenue to Overtoun House LinkExternal link of which avenue the bridge is just one part. See that link for much more information on the avenue as a whole, and for an account of the avenue's official opening, an event that took place when the guests were assembled at the eastern end of this bridge.

At the top of the avenue, "the approach spans the romantic and picturesque Overtoun Burn, near the mansion house, by a magnificent new bridge consisting of three spans: the centre one of 32 feet and the side ones of 10 feet each. The total length of the bridge is 135 feet, and width 14 feet, and its height over 50 feet from the bed of the burn to the top of the parapet wall. The style of the bridge is [Scottish] Baronial, in harmony with the style of the home. It has taken a year to build the bridge alone. The stone a beautiful white freestone has all been got on the estate, and has been conveyed by a light railway about a mile in length".

See LinkExternal link for what is almost certainly the quarry referred to there; it also supplied some of the stone used to built Overtoun House (the remainder being taken from the building site itself). The straight-line distance from the quarry to the house is a little under three-quarters of a mile, and as noted at LinkExternal link in connection with the avenue, the light railway was about three-quarters of a mile long.

No trace of the light railway remains, but my own opinion (based on familiarity with the topography of the area) is that its course probably corresponded fairly closely with that of the present-day footpath that leads from the entrance of the quarry, past the Woodland Trust's "Welcome Cairn" sculpture and through the nearby gate, and then along a curving footpath that meets the road about 90 metres to the east of Overtoun House; that route would not require a crossing of the Overtoun Burn).

In more recent times, interest in Overtoun Bridge has increased on account of the appearance of many documentaries and articles about so-called "dog suicides"; see LinkExternal link (at Skeptoid) for a sober assessment.
by Lairich Rig
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13 images use this description:

NS4276 : Overtoun Bridge (detail) by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Date stone on Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Passing under Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Steps beside Overtoun Bridge by Richard Sutcliffe
NS4276 : Path beneath Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Overtoun House and Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Armorial achievement on side of Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Overtoun House by Richard Sutcliffe
NS4276 : Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig
NS4276 : Overtoun Bridge by Lairich Rig


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Created: Mon, 9 May 2011, Updated: Sat, 5 Nov 2016

The 'Shared Description' text on this page is Copyright 2011 Lairich Rig, however it is specifically licensed so that contributors can reuse it on their own images without restriction.

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