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Kirkintilloch Town and Parish
Luggie Bridge

In 1672 William, Earl of Wigton, built a bridge of three arches over the Luggie—the old bridge being quite ruinous.

The building of this new bridge is said to be “a maist necessary and useful bridge for the saife passage of all persons who travel from Edinbro' and Stirling to Glasgow and Dumbarton, being situated on the highway leading to and fro these touns.”

The earl, in consideration of the expenses he incurred in building the new bridge, was permitted, by Act of Parliament—for the space of five years after the opening of the same—to exact an imposition of four pennies Scots for every ox, horse, or cow; four pennies for every ten sheep ; and eight pennies for every loadened cart.


Whether the present bridge was the one built by the earl is a matter of doubt. Tradition says that the earl's bridge was swept away during a flood, and that the present one was built to replace, it.

Be that as it may, Luggie Bridge known sixty years ago, remains still, although scarcely recognisable. It was then a narrow bridge, with walls so low that it was the delight of schoolboys to walk along their tops.

When tolls and road trusts were abolished in 1881, the road trustees, under whose charge the bridge then was, and whose office was about to expire, had some funds in hand, and wisely resolved to improve Luggie Bridge before it passed out of their hands.

After fixing on a plan, they engaged a contractor, who took down the walls and erected strong buttresses or brackets, springing from the piers of the bridge, and of strength sufficient to carry a foot-path on either side of the bridge, in addition to the breadth of the former road. In lieu of the walls, cast-iron railings were erected of sufficient height to be safe against anything except deliberate suicide. The bridge is well lighted by five handsome lamps, and the whole appearance of the structure is entirely changed, the old steep approaches being also levelled up.

The traveller of fifty years ago will remember the narrow and rather steep road over the bridge, which at all times gave one the idea of going through a gate on pass, and on dark nights especially, pedestrians had to “ look out ” for horses, cows, or vehicles, as there was little room and some risk of accident. Now, however, passengers are safe by night or day on well-lighted pavements, and young Jehus need never abate the speed of their chariots—there is room for all.

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