The Third Forth Bridge

I saw the Third Forth Bridge for the first time yesterday. It’s hard to get a good picture of it from the rail bridge but here’s my best effort.

Three Forth Bridges
Three Forth Bridges

It shows how over-engineered the rail bridge is, with its massive structure. Beyond it is the original road (suspension) bridge and beyond that again are a couple of pillars for the new bridge – one at the far right of the picture just visible under the existing road bridge.

The purpose of the trip wasn’t to admire bridges or stations or anything, but I couldn’t help being impressed by the improvements to Edinburgh’s Haymarket station, where I got on the train. Not only does it now have a huge concourse with automatic ticket machines and better information displays, but I found on my return it actually has an escalator up from one of the platforms! Maybe I’m getting unreasonably excited by this development – I think it’s a throwback to the time when we first visited London as a family and my brother and I were more interested in the long escalators at the deep underground stations than in anything else, including Hamley’s toy shop.

Haymarket station
Edinburgh – Haymarket station

The reason for my trip was to go to a family reunion in Dunfermline, where my mother’s family were from. Most of the people at the reunion were descended from a coal-miner in Dunfermline in 1672. Needless to say none of the participants are still involved in coal-mining these days, and some have even escaped to America, Canada and Australia.

What I always forget about Dunfermline until I go back there is that everywhere is uphill. The station, which is now called Dunfermline Town but which I think must have been the one that was called Dunfermline Lower (there was an ‘Upper’ station too but it seems to have vanished), is at a lower level than the town centre, the glen and almost everything else in the older part of the town, apart from the street where my great-granny lived, which is just behind the station and runs parallel to the railway line.

The town, however, is very pretty and historic, and well worth seeing, even if you don’t have a family reunion to go to.

The Abbot House
The Abbot House
Carnegie Hall
Carnegie Hall