Dec 2 2011 by Johnathon Menzies, Stirling Observer Friday
FIGHT IS ON TO REPAIR BRIDGE
POLITICIANS yesterday (Thursday) pledged to pull out all the stops in a bid to repair a flood-ravaged bridge in Drymen.
As much as 100 metres of the wall on the southside A811 carriageway leading to the stone structure over the River Endrick was washed away following a prolonged downpour throughout Monday and Tuesday this week.
Local councillor Graham Lambie and Stirling MSP Bruce Crawford both told the Observer they were due to meet with concerned locals today (Friday) as the repair bill begins to be calculated.
Councillor Lambie said it was unclear when restoration work would begin, but did state an assessment of the damage was already underway.
The SNP elected member continued: “As a former pupil of Drymen Primary School, I can recall the Endrick flooding before, but never to this extent.
“Local police officers have stated that they have never seen the water rise as quickly as this.
“I would like to commend Sergeant David Hannah, his Balfron policing team, and the other emergency services for the prompt action they took to assist with road closures and vehicle breakdowns.
“Stirling Council’s roads officers are currently inspecting the site and I intend to visit the road.
“At this stage, pending the roads officers’ assessment, I cannot give an exact date when the road repairs will be undertaken – but rest assured we will work as hard as we can to repair the road so it is safe for drivers.”
Central Scotland Police said on Wednesday that the Drymen Bridge had been reopened and that traffic was being controlled by temporary lights.
Stirling MSP Bruce Crawford added: “Clearly, repair work and the safety of road users are essential on this major arterial road.”
Cameron McCann, who runs the Ealain Gallery on Drymen’s Main Street with wife, June, said footfall increased as locals and tourists alike were unable to leave the picturesque village due to road closures.
And local licensee Lynne Plank said the rain had failed to dampen spirits ahead of a party marking the 30th anniversary of her family’s involvement with the Clachan Inn, which took place yesterday (Thursday).
Elsewhere, pupils at Aberfoyle Primary School were given three days off this week as, initially, flooding problems resulted in closure on Tuesday, strike action across the country meant it was shut on Wednesday and a heating system failure – caused by water damage to the boiler room – saw pupils remain at home on Thursday.
Callander Community Council secretary Cathy McNab, said the town’s usual flooding hotspots, Ancaster Road, the Meadows and the Leny Feus in particular, were badly hit.
“I saw shops had some of their flood defences out when I was in the town. I think anywhere that was badly hit was the sort of place that always has problems, no matter how much rain there is,” she said.
Motorists were advised to drive cautiously along the A81 leading to Gartmore, the stretch of the B829 between Aberfoyle and Kinlochard, and the B8031 Coldoch Road between Thornhill and Blairdrummond, at Powblack Farm.
Staff at Stirling Council sprang into action following SEPA flood warnings for Stirling, Bridge of Allan, Dunblane and Callander at the start of the week.
In addition to a host of road and school closures, council-run Stirling venue the Tolbooth was also closed on Tuesday – leading to the postponement of the popular ‘Pump Up The Jam’ music workshop event.
One Facebook user joked: “It was more a case of ‘Pump Out The Water’”.