Aira Force and the National Trust
by Emma Bray
The Spring Rice brothers
The upper bridge was built in dedication to brothers Stephen and Gerald Spring Rice. Eldest brother Stephen was a senior civil servant and held the offices of Principal Clerk in the Treasury, together with Auditor of the Civil List at the time of his death, at the age of 46 in 1902. His brother Cecil, always maintained that his dedication to service of the nation was such that he died from overwork. Stephen is buried at nearby All Saints Church, Watermillock.
A new viewing platform for Aira Force
Aira Force has been a tourist destination for over 200 years and today welcomes more than 250,000 visitors a year. Over this time the footpaths have been adapted to meet visitor needs whilst maintaining, as far as possible, the original experience of the woodland walk to the Falls.
To improve visitors' safety and enhance their experience further, work is currently underway to replace two areas of walkway. The existing main viewing area will be replaced with a steel platform cantilevered out over the gorge, enhancing not only the view upwards to the Falls but also to the river below. A second area of walkway, which has proved difficult to stabilise due to the steep slope on one side, will be improved using steel bolted into the rock.