This viaduct was built at Gotuwala between the two railway stations – Ella and Demodara during the British Colonial period is the largest in Sri Lanka. Located almost 3100 feet above the sea level, this 99.6ft high bridge is called “Ahas namaye palama” (Nine skies bridge) in Sinhala. When one stands underneath it and looks up there is a beautiful sight of ‘nine skies’ through the nine arches, hence the Sinhala name. This bridge is also called ‘The Bridge in the sky’ due to the sheer height.

This massive bridge is built entirely of solid rocks, bricks and cement without using a single piece of steel. The bridge was finally commissioned in 1921.

There is a popular story to say that when construction work was commenced on the bridge, the World War 1 broke-out and the steel consignment assigned for this site was seized and was used for war related projects. When the work came to a standstill the locals came forward and build the bridge with solid stone bricks and cement without steel.

According to one of his grand sons now living in this house, P.K. Appuhami was born in 1870 and has been popular drummer and a devil dancer. One day he has lost a drumming competition to another drummer during a thovil ceremony and has returned home in the traditional devil costume.A rather unknown story was published in the Maubima news paper about the origin of this bridge. According to this article,  The construction of this  bridge was given to a person call P.K. Appuhami living in Kappatipola in Melimada.

At that time the railway was being constructed and and the Britisher who saw him in the costume got frightened seeing him near Ohiya Railway Station. But later a relationship was built up between them and Appuhami has helped the construction of the railway by supplying labor to the Britisher.

When the construction reached gap between two hills the British engineers got worried due to a quagmire at the bottom of this gap.  Securely anchoring the columns of a bridge to the ground was issue.  Appuhami by this time has secured the trust of the engineers by then and requested to hand over the construction of this massive bridge to him. After rejecting the first time, they finally agreed to hand over this mammoth task to Appuhami.

He has started work around 1913 and got his men to topple large rocks to this gap until they filled up the bottom and then he has built the brick columns on this rock bed. He has completed the work within about an year and the cost of construction was so low, that the Britishers were unsure of the structural integrity of the bridge.

Appuhami assured that he will lie down under the bridge on the first train voyage across this and he is said to kept to the promise when the railway line was first commissioned.

Based on forklore in the area it is said that the English offered the balance payment and he carried four cart full of siver coins from Colombo and that he provided meals for the Parabedda and Puranwela villagers for 2 days and also gave them one silver coin each.

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