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Ackergillshore, Old Lifeboat House And Slipway

Slipway (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Ackergillshore, Old Lifeboat House And Slipway

Classification Slipway (Period Unassigned)

Alternative Name(s) Ackergill Harbour; Ackergill, Lifeboat Station; Ackergill Haven; Ackergill Life Boat Pier

Canmore ID 331809

Site Number ND35SE 75.01

NGR ND 35856 54543

NGR Description centred

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Highland
  • Parish Wick
  • Former Region Highland
  • Former District Caithness
  • Former County Caithness


Construction (1910)

Believed to be the first ferro-concrete slipway in Britain.

R PAxton and J Shipway, 2007.

Publication Account (2007)

Ackergill Lifeboat Slipway

(Institute Civil Engineers Historic Engineering Works no. HEW 1500)

This unusual structure, erected in 1910, is believed to be the first ferro-concrete slipway in Britain. It was built for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution to provide a launching pad for the lifeboat in heavy seas. The boat was normally kept at the top of the ramp ready for immediate use.

The early use of reinforced concrete rather than mass concrete can be seen in the adoption of a framed structure in the style of earlier timber construction. This is noticeable in the detailing, for example the chamfered edges to the posts and diagonals and the gussets at the joints. It has lasted well in adverse weather conditions as there is little discolouration and no spalling of the cover to the reinforcement.

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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