|Length||98.3 mi (158.2 km)|
|Northeast end||Tarbet ( )|
| A82 ( )|
A814 ( )
A815 ( )
A816 ( )
A819 ( )
|Southwest end||Campbeltown ( )|
|Glasgow, Inveraray, Lochgilphead, Campbeltown|
The A83 is a major road in the south of Argyll and Bute, Scottish Highlands, running from Tarbet, on the western shore of Loch Lomond, where it splits from the A82, to Campbeltown at the southern end of the Kintyre peninsula.
From Tarbet the A83 runs west across the watershed between Loch Lomond and Loch Long to Arrochar near the head of Loch Long. It then goes round the head of the loch, and along the western shore for a short distance, before turning NW up Glen Croe to the Rest & be thankful viewpoint picnic area in Cowal, at the pass through the Arrochar Alps from the shore of Loch Long to that of Loch Fyne. It was near this spot that an RAF Tornado crashed on 2 July 2009.
The words REST & BE THANKFUL are inscribed on a stone near the junction of the A83 and the B828, placed there by soldiers who built the original military road in 1753, now referred to as the Drovers' Road. The original stone fell into ruin and was replaced by a commemorative stone at the same site.
The section is so named as the climb out of Glen Croe is so long and steep at the end that it was customary for travellers to rest at the top, and be thankful for having reached the highest point. The current road no longer keeps to the floor of Glen Croe but steadily climbs across the southern slopes of The Cobbler, on the north side of the Glen, to the highest point of the pass. The westward descent to Loch Fyne is through Glen Kinglas. At Cairndow the A815, the main road down the Cowal peninsula, branches off south to Dunoon and finally Toward at the A815 road end, both on the Firth of Clyde.
On reaching the shore of Loch Fyne, the A83 follows the eastern shore of the loch northwards to its head and then goes south west along the western shore through Inveraray and then on to Lochgilphead and Ardrishaig, where it crosses the entrance to the Crinan Canal.
From Ardrishaig the road continues south to Tarbert, where it crosses over to the western shore of the Kintyre peninsula. In the final section it passes through the villages of Whitehouse, Clachan, Tayinloan, Muasdale and Bellochantuy before finally crossing back to the east of the peninsula, on the Firth of Clyde coast, as it approaches Campbeltown.
Glen Croe viewed from Rest and be thankful viewpoint
Rest and Be Thankful closures
The stretch south of the Rest and Be Thankful junction has been closed on a number of occasions due to landslides, causing significant disruption to local traffic. The many communities affected by the closures of the trunk road are campaigning for a permanent solution to be constructed by Transport Scotland. Suggestions include a rock shed, so future slips flow over the trunk road, and a new road route.
Transport Scotland has in recent years spent £80m on landslip prevention schemes none of which has improved the situation on the trunk road. The many wire slip capture nets and supporting cables have failed on many occasions and blight the picturesque area.
- The trunk road was closed here due to a 400 tonne landslide on 28 October 2007. The road was partially reopened on Monday 10 November.
- A 1,070 tonne landslide closed the trunk road around noon on 8 September 2009. The road reopened at 15.00 on 10 September 2009.
- A landslip on 1 December 2011 closed the trunk road for 24 hours.
- Another landslip closed the trunk road from 22 February 2012, and an even more substantial landslip in August 2012 resulted in further major delays and closures.
- On 3 October 2013, the trunk road was reopened at 17.30, having been closed between the A815 and the B828 since the previous night. The Transport Scotland contractor, Bear Scotland said, that from 21:00 they would continue to work on some sections of the A83, so drivers might experience slight delays during the night.
- On 30 December 2015, Storm Frank caused a 200 tonne landslide; two cars were caught up in the debris but no one was harmed. The trunk road reopened the following afternoon.
- The A83 trunk road closed again for a period of nine days in October 2018, in response to landslides triggered during the start of Storm Callum.
- In August 2020 a landslip happened as the area experienced heavy rains, again closing the trunk road.
- In September 2020, after being re-opened for only five days, a further landslip happened as the area again experienced heavy rains, closing the trunk road.
In March 2020 Transport Scotland said it was investing in the further construction of catch pits which it hoped would mitigate against landslides along the A83 trunk road route. However, the trunk road was again blocked by a further landslide in August 2020. The closure results in a 59-mile (93km) diversion via Crianlarich.
- "Driving directions to Longrow S/A83". Google Maps. Retrieved 23 September 2013.
- "Two killed in RAF Tornado crash". 2 July 2009 – via news.bbc.co.uk.
- Council, Argyll and Bute (5 March 2020). "Council Leader calls again for a permanent solution for A83". Argyll and Bute Council.
- "Rest and Be Thankful: Cross-party calls for work on permanent solution to start next year". 11 August 2020.
- "Transport Scotland | Rest and Be Thankful". www.transport.gov.scot.
- "It's the pits: £80m taxpayers' money 'wasted' over multiple failed fixes to iconic Scots road". HeraldScotland.
- REPORT PPR743/https://trl.co.uk/sites/default/files/PPR743%20-An%20Extended%20and%20Updated%20Technical%20Evaluation%20of%20Wig-Wag%20Signs%20at%20the%20A83%20Rest%20and%20be%20Thankful.pdf
- "'Flatout' efforts to reopen A83". BBC News. 5 November 2007.
- "A83 Rest and be Thankful Open - Single Lane only". Islay Weblog. 9 November 2007.
- "Landslip as winds batter Scotland". BBC News. 8 September 2009.
- "Road open 48 hours after landslip". BBC News. 10 September 2009.
- "Slip could close A83 Rest and Be Thankful for 24 hours". BBC News. 1 December 2011.
- "Landslip closes A83 Rest and Be Thankful in Argyll". BBC News. 23 February 2012.
- Dalton, Alastair. "A83 could reopen today as work resumes to clear Rest and Be Thankful landslide". The Scotsman. Archived from the original on 10 November 2013.
- "A83 at Rest and be Thankful reopens following landslip". BBC News. 3 October 2013.
- "Argyll News: A83 now closed with landslide at Rest & Be Thankful". For Argyll. 30 December 2015. Archived from the original on 18 January 2016. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
- Campbell, Rita (30 December 2015). "Storm Frank: Cars caught up in Rest and Be Thankful landslide". The Press and Journal. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
- "Boulders 'as big as cars' at Rest and Be Thankful". BBC News. 5 August 2020. Retrieved 7 August 2020.
- "A83: Rest and Be Thankful to remain closed overnight due to landslide". Herald Scotland. 13 September 2020. Retrieved 13 September 2020.
- "Rest and Be Thankful: New pit to combat landslips on A83". BBC News. 5 March 2020. Retrieved 5 March 2020.
- "Boulders 'as big as cars' in Rest and Be Thankful landslip". BBC News. 5 August 2020.
- "Road workers abused over 59 mile diversion". 21 August 2020 – via www.bbc.co.uk.