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Civil Engineering heritage: Scotland - Highlands and Islands

Date 2007

Event ID 929586

Category Descriptive Accounts

Type Publication Account


Harbour of Refuge, Peterhead Bay

This harbour, an area of approximately 300 acres in Peterhead bay, is enclosed by two breakwaters. The north breakwater, constructed 1912–56, is approximately 1500 ft long. It is founded on levelled rock and constructed of 40 ton precast concrete blocks laid in horizontal courses.

The south breakwater, constructed from 1892–1912, is approximately 2700 ft long. It is of similar construction but was founded on a shallow tipped stone mound. Convict labour from nearby Peterhead prison was used as direct labour during construction.

Construction ceased during winter months and, to prevent damage by rough seas, unfinished work was secured by 2 in. diameter steel clamps. These were removable and were re-used at the end of each building

season. This did not prevent damage to partially constructed work and, in thewinter of 1928, a stormdisplaced a 34 ft long section of wall by 2 in. It was calculated that a force of 2 tons sq. ft was necessary to cause the displacement. The engineer for the project was Sir John Coode.

R Paxton and J Shipway, 2007.

Reproduced from 'Civil Engineering heritage: Scotland - Highlands and Islands' with kind permission from Thomas Telford Publishers.

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