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Guard Bridge

A fine Mediaeval crossing over the River Eden, just before it widens to form the Eden Estuary in Fife, Guard Bridge lies to the south southeast of the village of Guardbridge. Built on the instructions of Bishop Henry Wardlaw (c.1365 - 1440) in 1419, it forms a crucial crossing on the pilgrimmage route to St Andrews. It is a rather massive structure, with six semicircular arches, the easternmost smaller than the others, and substantial triangular cutwaters. It extends to approximately 115m / 377 feet, and was repaired in the 16th C. by James Beaton, Archbishop of St Andrews (c.1473 - 1539), again in 1678-86, 1786 and 1802.

This bridge was replaced by a modern three-span concrete structure to the south in 1938, although is still open to pedestrian traffic. A metal railway bridge to the north closed in 1969 and demolished, leaving only circular stone piers rising above the river bed.


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