Font Size

100% 150% 200%

Background Colour

Default Contrast
Close Reset

Caledonian Canal, Banavie Railway Swing Bridge

Railway Bridge (19-20th Century)

Site Name Caledonian Canal, Banavie Railway Swing Bridge

Classification Railway Bridge (19-20th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Banavie Swing Bridge

Canmore ID 103543

Site Number NN17NW 19

NGR NN 11206 76811

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2019.

Toggle Aerial | View on large map

Digital Images

Administrative Areas

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Kilmallie
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Lochaber
  • Former County Inverness-shire

Recording Your Heritage Online

Swing Bridge, engineers Simpson & Wilson, opened 1901 Hand operated, it carries the railway to Mallaig over the canal on a massive steel bowed truss. The wooden signal box nearby (which now controls the whole West Highland Line) is a 1980s replica of the original (station demolished).

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

Archaeology Notes

NN17NW 19.00 11206 76811

Swing-bridges [NAT]

(notes both NN17NW 17 and NN17NW 19 )

OS 1:10,000 map, 1975.

NN17NW 19.01 NN 1128 7678 Level Crossing and Signal Box

NN17NW 19.02 NN 11254 76784 New Signal Box (Railway Signalling Centre)

For adjacent (road) swing bridge (to NE) , see NN17NW 17.

Not to be confused with Fort William, Lochy Railway Bridge (NN17NW 21).

Location formerly entered as NN 11203 76814.

Formerly entered as NN17NW 17 at cited location NN 1120 7682.

Swing bridge (NBR) crosses Caledonian Canal. Opened 1.4.1901 (WHR).

(Undated) information in NMRS.

(Location cited as NN 112 768). Opened 1901 by the West Highland Extension Rly, engineers Simpson & Wilson. A massive steel truss swing bridge, hand-operated, carrying the WHER over the Caledonian Canal. A wooden signal box protects the bridge, using standard North British Rly. signals.

J R Hume 1977.

A RCAHMS photographic survey of the Railway Swing Bridge over the Caledonian Canal at Banavie, was undertaken in order to enhance and augment the National Monuments Record Scotland holdings.

Visited by RCAHMS (MKO), September 1997.

This swing bridge is clearly marked on the current edition of the OS 1:10000 map (1975) and on the OS Basic Scale raster map (ND). It takes the railway over the canal at the S end of the Banavie Locks or Neptune's Staircase (NN17NW 11.01).

Information from RCAHMS (MD), 30 August 2001.

This swing bridge carries the Fort William - Mallaig railway line (the 'West Highland Extension Railway') over the Caledonian Canal at the foot of Banavie Locks (Neptune's Staircase: NN17NW 11.01) and immediately SW of the corresponding road bridge (NN17SW 17).

The location assigned to this record defines the apparent midpoint of the structure. The available map evidence suggests that it extends from NN c. 11184 76826 to NN c. 11222 76800.

Information from RCAHMS (RJCM), 9 May 2006.


Field Visit (16 October 2013 - 16 October 2013)

Banavie Railway Swing Bridge.

An embossed plaque on the SW side of the bridge has “Alex Findlay & Co. Park Neuk Works Motherwell”.

To the south of the bridge there is a device for opening it manually; a gantry of ironwork has a pivot on the end which would have guided a rope or chain connected to a crab winch on the south bank of the canal. The crab winch at GR NN 11200 76781 has “W Forrest & Co PT Dundass Glasgow” embossed on it

Visited by the Scottish Canals Recording Project (MM), 2013


MyCanmore Image Contributions

Contribute an Image

MyCanmore Text Contributions