Royal Arch

The Royal Arch was erected in Dundee between 1849 and 1853 to commemorate a visit to the city by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert in 1844.

The Royal Arch, (often described as being in the "Anglo-Norman" style), consisted of a large, triumphal arch, flanked by two smaller side arches, and surmounted by two central turrets. It was 80 feet across. Costing somewhere between £2,270.00 and £3,000.00, it was mostly funded by public subscription and harbour trustees. It was situated between King William IV Dock and Earl Grey Dock on the south side of Dock Street between the junctions of Castle Street, and Whitehall Crescent.

After winning a design competition, John Thomas Rochead designed the permanent sandstone monument to replace the original wooden one, (designed by harbour engineer James Leslie), that had been erected for the Royal visit on 11 September 1844. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert were on a visit to Lord Glenlyon and the Duke of Atholl, and landed under the Royal Arch. They returned and embarked for London on 1 October 1844.

This was the first visit by a monarch to the city since the 17th century.

The Royal Arch, (also known as Victoria Arch), was demolished in early 1964, as part of the land reclamation scheme, and to make way for the construction of the Tay Road Bridge. On 16 March 1964, it was dynamited, and the remains were thrown into both the King William IV and the Earl Grey Docks. Afterwards, the docks were land filled to accommodate the slip roads for the new Tay Road Bridge.

A cast bronze model of the bridge is situated outside the East entrance to the Overgate Centre in the middle of the city. The arch was also used symbolically by Steven Holl Architects for the unsuccessful Victoria and Albert museum bid which was to be located on the banks of the River Tay.

John Thomas Rochead also designed the Wallace Monument near Stirling, Scotland.

Sources
  • "Royal Arch, Dundee". Dundee City Council. 2002. http://www.dundeecity.gov.uk/photodb/wc0555.htm.  unknown
  • "Royal Arch, Dundee Docks". Dictionary of Scottish Architects. 2006. http://www.codexgeo.co.uk/dsa/building_full.php?id=M014989. 
  • "Royal Arch, Dundee Docks". Gazetteer for Scotland. 2004. http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk/descriptions/entry_page.jsp;jsessionid=C7BAD18FD54ECFA34B9C625ADC7935B3?text_id=106850&word=NULL. Frances Groome

Coordinates: 56°27′34″N 2°58′04″W / 56.45944°N 2.96778°W / 56.45944; -2.96778