Glenfinnan Railway Viaduct

Railway Viaduct

Site Name Glenfinnan Railway Viaduct

Classification Railway Viaduct

Alternative Name(s) Glenfinnan Viaduct; River Finnan; River Finna; Loch Shiel

Canmore ID 23340

Site Number NM98SW 2

NGR NM 90992 81343

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Ordnance Survey licence number 100020548. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Arisaig And Moidart
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Lochaber
  • Former County Inverness-shire

Recording Your Heritage Online

Glenfinnan Less than a century after the Commissioners¿ first Parliamentary road had opened up this district for travel overland as far as Arisaig (1804¿12 ), steam trains were clattering their way along the spectacular 'iron road to the Isles'¿ -the Fort William to Mallaig extension of the West Highland Railway, engineered by Simpson & Wilson of Glasgow, with contractors Robert McAlpine & Sons.

Glenfinnan Viaduct, 1897¿1901 The tour de force of this outstanding feat of concrete engineering was the first and longest mass concrete viaduct in Britain. A rhythm of 21 arches supports a crescent 1,24 8 ft long, carrying the railway line 100 ft above the river.

Taken from "Western Seaboard: An Illustrated Architectural Guide", by Mary Miers, 2008. Published by the Rutland Press

Archaeology Notes

NM98SW 2 90992 81343

Glenfinnan Viaduct [NAT]

OS 1:10,000 map, 1974.

Location formerly entered as from NM 908 813 to NM 911 812, and as NM 90986 81349.

For Glenfinnan Station (NM 89872 80974), see NM88SE 1.

Opened 1.4.1901 West Highland Railway, Mallaig Extension.

North British Railway; West Highland Extension. Concrete pylon construction.

(Undated) information in NMRS.

(Location cited as NM 910 813). Glenfinnan Viaduct, opened 1901 by the West Highland Extension Rly. A magnificent 21-span curved viaduct, with semicircular arches, constructed of mass concrete. The longest concrete railway bridge in Scotland, at 416 yds (380m) long.

J R Hume 1977.

This viaduct was built by Robert McAlpine & Sons of Glasgow to carry the West Highland (Extension) railway across the valley of the River Finna (or Finnan) at the head of Loch Shiel. The viaduct itself is chiefly of interest for its pioneering concrete construction, and remains in regular use by passenger traffic.

Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 12 December 2000.

M Smith 1994.

A RCAHMS photographic survey of Glenfinnan Viaduct was carried out following the centenary celebrations in 1997.

Visited by RCAHMS (MKO) July 1997.

The location assigned to this record defines the midpoint of the structure. The available map evidence indicates that it extends from NM c. 90838 81305 to NM c. 91174 81238.

Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 21 April 2006.



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