Theatres in Ayrshire ~ 1800 - 2014

Ayr : The Twa Briggs.

This view of the town is taken from the site of the Darlington Church, later the Borderline Theatre.  It shows the first "New Bridge" with the Auld Brig in the background.  The engraving is based on s painting by David Octavius Hill prepared for his "The Land of Burns, a Series of Landscapes and Portraits" published by Blackie in 1840  In the foreground is a toll gate or bar and at left a small group of children and a dog have gathered around a raree show or diorama.

A twentieth century gazetteer provides this description of the location:

The burgh is dominated by the Town Steeple, a very fine piece of work which is perhaps best appreciated from a view-point at the far end of the New Bridge, by which the main road crosses the river. From this bridge also is a good view of the Auld Brig immortalised by Burns in his poem 'The Brigs of Ayr'. Its antiquity is undoubted, and although a few years ago it was in peril of demolition and was only saved by the intervention of the Burns Clubs, it still stands a champion of the soundness of thirteenth-century workmanship. The New Bridge, seen in this illustration, `against which Burns imagined inveighing was a predecessor of the present New Bridge.


David Octavius Hill (1802-1870), Ayr: The Twa Briggs. Glasgow, Blackie & Son, [1840].  Engraving by Thomas Higham (1796-1844). 

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