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Historic Building Details

HB Ref No:

Extent of Listing:

Date of Construction:
1700 - 1719

Address :
Kate McKay's Bridge Ardbrin Road Katesbridge Banbridge Co Down BT32

Ballybrick Shannaghan

Survey 2:

Date of Listing:
02/08/1978 00:00:00

Date of De-listing:

Current Use:

Former Use

Conservation Area:

Industrial Archaeology:





OS Map No:

IG Ref:
J2095 4076

Owner Category

Central Govt

Exterior Description And Setting

Kate McKay’s Bridge is a five-arch masonry road bridge over the River Lagan at the S end of Katesbridge. Only the middle three arches are in use in normal river conditions. The bridge is of random granite and Silurian rubble construction throughout. The abutments and piers have been underpinned with concrete. There are angled cutwaters at both ends of all piers, rising to arch spring level; their tapered caps continue to road level. The arches are of semicircular profile and increase in both height and width towards the middle. All their soffits and voussoirs have been gunited. The spandrels and parapets are heavily pointed. There is a steel plate and tie rod through each side of the arch crowns. The parapets are coped with flat, roughly-dressed granite blocks. The deck is slightly curved and comprises two lanes. The rubble masonry crown of a floodwater arch is visible towards the S end of the bridge on its upstream face. The downstream face of this arch is buried. No such flood arch now visible at the N end of the bridge. Setting: Rural
setting south of Katesbridge village.


Not Known

Historical Information

Moll’s 1714 map cites a ‘New Bridge’ at this location. It is recorded by Harris in 1743 as ‘Makey’s Bridge’. It is cited on the 1833 OS map and subsequent editions as ‘Kate McKay’s Bridge’. The 1837 Ordnance Survey Memoir notes: “It is a plain structure of unhewn stone, consisting of vie large arches and a small flood arch on each side of the larger ones. Total length of the bridge 210ft, breadth of the bridge 16½ft, breadth of the river at the bridge 125ft”. Given the absence of evidence for rebuilding or widening, the bridge is likely to be the original one, i.e. Of c.1700 date. References Primary sources 1. PRONI T1609. H. Moll, ‘New Map of Ireland’ (1714). 2. PRONI T2125/13/9A. W. Harris, ‘A New and Correct Map of Co Down’ (1743). 3. PRONI OS/6/3/35/1. First edition OS six-inch map, Co Down sheet 35 (1833). 4. OS Memoir for Newry Parish (1837). Reprinted as A. Day & P. McWilliams (eds), Ordnance Survey Memoirs of Ireland: Parishes of County Down I, 1834-6, South Down (Belfast: Institute of Irish Studies, 1990).

Criteria for Listing

Architectural Interest

A. Style B. Proportion C. Ornamentation D. Plan Form F. Structural System H-. Alterations detracting from building J. Setting

Historic Interest

X. Local Interest


Kate McKay’s Bridge is an early 18th century five-arch masonry road bridge over the River Lagan. Its multiple semicircular arches and unembellished style are representative of bridge construction of this period. The bridge is also of historical interest not only as a crossing point on the Lagan, but also because it gives its name to the village and for its relatively early date. Its historic setting survives and it is a good example this type of early bridge representing the development of infrastructure in the district.

General Comments

Date of Survey

10 February 2012