When the Tay Bridge was completed in 1878 after taking six years to build, it was one of the longest bridges in the world and a marvel of Victorian engineering.
But on the night of December 28, 1879, the unthinkable happened.
Battered by a ferocious storm, the 13 ‘high girders’ of the rail bridge over the Tay estuary collapsed into the river below, carrying with them a train and all its passengers and crew. There were no survivors.
There has been much debate over the years on what caused the fall of the Tay Bridge and who was really to blame.
The Board of Inquiry concluded that a combination of design failures, construction and maintenance were at fault, with renowned engineer Sir Thomas Bouch officially blamed.
Now, in an illustrated talk, retired Dundee University history professor David Swinfen – author of revised and updated book ‘The Fall of the Tay Bridge’ – will give his analysis.
*Museum Talk: Tay Rail Bridge Disaster by Prof. David Swinfen, Dundee Museum of Transport, July 27.