Laggan Dam Construction

Photographs taken during the construction of Laggan Dam.

The structure was built as part of the Lochaber hydroelectric scheme by Balfour Beatty for the British Aluminium Company and construction was finished in 1934. The supervising engineers were the firm of C S Meik and William Halcrow, now known as the Halcrow Group.

The dam is about 700 feet (210 metres) long, and 48 m (157 ft) high between the level of the foundations and the crest of the spillway. It is curved upstream like an arch dam with a radius of curvature of 2,000 ft (610 m), but works purely on the principle of a gravity dam.

The whole crest of the dam, except for a section in the middle that houses equipment, is a spillway broken into 29 bays by piers that support a roadway across the dam. As well as the spillway, there are six pipes embedded into the centre of the dam, controlled automatically by system of air valves. The foundations are built on granite, and the dam was built in seven sections, with copper strip and hot poured asphalt water stops in the joints.

The dam contains a reservoir which has a capacity of 40,000,000 cubic metres (1.4 billion cubic feet).

Laggan Dam Construction