A number of bridges have been built over the River Tay since the
11th century, many of which were damaged by flooding. The
previous Perth Bridge was destroyed by flooding in 1617. For a
while after this, ferries were used to cross the river until
this bridge was built in 1771. The bridge was the largest in
Scotland at the time.
The current bridge was built by the renowned engineer John
Smeaton and is a major route across the river to Perth city
center. The seven arches which form the bridge are a major
landmark in the area, and make a significant contribution to the
surrounding landscape. Constructed of local Perth sandstone, the
bridge was widened in 1869 to provide footpaths to either side.
The two arches at either side of the bridge allow for capacity
if there is flooding and the arch spans increase in width
towards the center of the bridge.