- Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway
The Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway (GPK&AR) was a railway in Scotland that provided train services between Glasgow, Kilmarnock and Ayr. For a short period, it also provided West Coast services between Glasgow and London. Opened in stages between 1839 and 1848, the line ran from Paisley in the north to Cumnock and Ayr in the south. The section between Paisley and Glasgow was jointly owned by the Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway. The GPK&AR merged with the Glasgow, Dumfries and Carlisle Railway to form the Glasgow and South Western Railway (G&SWR) in 1850, which was in turn incorporated into the London, Midland and Scottish Railway (LMS) in 1923, and later nationalised to become part of British Railways in 1948.
Since nationalisation the line has suffered numerous cutbacks and closures, mostly due to the Beeching Axe. As a result over half of the stations on the line are now closed. Most of the line and remaining stations are still in use as part of the Ayrshire Coast Line and Glasgow South Western Line.
- 1 History
- 1.1 1836 - 1850: Early days
- 1.2 1850 - 1923: Glasgow and South Western Railway
- 1.3 1923 - 1948: London, Midland and Scottish Railway
- 1.4 1948 - 1994: Nationalisation and line closures
- 1.5 1994 - present: Privatisation and current operations
- 2 Connections to other lines
- 3 References
- 4 External links
1836 - 1850: Early days
Planning and construction
The idea of a railway connecting Glasgow and Paisley with the towns of Ayrshire had been proposed for years, and in April 1836 a few individuals created a subscription for the creation of the railway. Soon, after several large monetary figures were received, a committee was formed and design work on the line began. The committee consisted of several Glasgow business men and others, who hired Grainger & Miller, civil engineers from Edinburgh, to elaborate the proposal. The proposal was met with general enthusiasm except from the residents of Kilmarnock, who desired a line that passed through the town rather than a branch from elsewhere. With the help of engineers Scott, Stephen & Gale, they countered the Grainger & Miller proposal with their own, which envisioned a line that would head south past Paisley and Johnstone, and then head further south east from Beith towards Kilmarnock before heading to Ayr via Troon and Monkton. Although this line was shorter than the first proposal it had more severe gradients, and when both ideas were submitted to George Stephenson he eventually chose the Grainger & Miller scheme.
Raising capital proved no problem for the committee, and by autumn 1836 the railway proposal had been forwarded to Parliament. As a result, the Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway Company was incorporated by an Act of Parliament, given Royal Assent on 15 July 1837, the same day on which the Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway (GP&GR) also received Royal Assent. The two companies agreed to share the line from Glasgow to Paisley, where the GP&GR would branch off to the north west towards Greenock, and the GPK&AR would head south west to Ayrshire. A separate committee was arranged to manage the joint line, chosen from board members of the parent companies. The Act gave the GPK&AR the power to raise a capital in joint stock of £625,000, with an additional £208,300 by loan.
The line, constructed by Grainger & Miller, opened in stages, the first being on 5 August 1839 between Ayr and Irvine. Later it would extend to Kilwinning on 23 March 1840, and to Beith on 21 July 1840. On the same day the joint line and part of the GPK&AR opened between Glasgow and Howwood opened, with the line opening fully between Ayr and Glasgow on 12 August 1840. A temporary terminus station at Howwood (or Howood) which had opened in July closed when the line fully opened. The joint line between Paisley and Glasgow was known as the Glasgow and Paisley Joint Railway, via which trains terminated at Bridge Street in Glasgow. The GPK&AR moved their head offices to Bridge Street from Gordon Street in March 1841.
The line between Dalry and Kilmarnock opened on 4 April 1843, and on 28 May 1848 a line opened between Irvine and Crosshouse allowing more direct passenger services from Kilmarnock to Ardrossan (via the Ardrossan Railway). On 16 July 1846 the GPK&AR took over control of the Kilmarnock and Troon Railway, and in 1847 the company bought the Paisley and Renfrew Railway, however the sale would not be completed until 31 July 1852.
The last line to open by the original company was a branch to Muirkirk from Auchinleck on 9 August 1848. The railway amalgamated with the Glasgow, Dumfries and Carlisle Railway (GD&CR) on 28 October 1850 to form the Glasgow and South Western Railway (G&SWR).
The first services on the line in 1839, between Irvine and Ayr, travelled at an average of 21 miles per hour (34 km/h) with stoppages averaging 1 min 6 secs per station, meaning a trip along the entire 10.5-mile (16.9 km) line at that point would have taken around 35½ minutes. The maxiumum fare for passengers at the time was 2d, 1½d and 1d for first, second and third class respectively. 137,117 passengers travelled on the line during the first year of services.
In conjunction with the Ardrossan Railway, which was regauged in 1840, on alternate days a fast steamboat service ran between Ardrossan Pier and Liverpool, and vice versa. This connected with the Grand Junction Railway and London and Birmingham Railway's expresses to London. In 1841 the steamboat service was transferred from Liverpool to the new Port at Fleetwood, Lancashire.
The original locomotives used on the line in 1839 were similar to those used on the London and Birmingham Railway, having 12-inch (305 mm) cylinders, 18-inch (457 mm) stroke and four wheels. Designed by Bury, the 2-2-0 locomotives cost around £1,200 per engine were given the names Mazeppa, Mercury, Marmion and Cutty-sark. Two more of the same design were obtained in 1841 named Stuart and Bute. The six original locomotives were withdrawn between 1858 and 1860. In 1840-1841 twelve 2-2-2 locomotives (designed by company engineer J. Miller) were built and given names such as Bruce, Eglinton, Phoenix, Prince Albert and Loudoun. Bruce and Cutty Sark hauled the first special train from Glasgow to Ayr on 11 August 1840.
Early passenger carriages were of similar design to those used on railways in England at the time, holding eighteen passengers on first class carriages, and thirty on second class. Third class carriages originally had seats, but on 15 April 1840 a board decision declared that all future third class carriages were to be made without seats. All existing third class carriages also had their seats removed. A later board decision on 3 July 1840 ordered that third class carriages would be situated closest to the engine, followed by second class, with first class at the rear.
Stations opened / closed
Stations opened and closed during this period: Date Stations opened 5 August 1839 Ayr, Barassie, Irvine, Monkton, Prestwick, Troon 23 March 1840 Bogside, Dalry, Kilwinning 21 July 1840 Beith, Cochrane Mill, Elderslie, Glengarnock, Howood, Johnstone, Paisley Gilmour St 12 August 1840 Lochwinnoch 4 April 1843 Busby, Dalry Junction, Stewarton 28 May 1848 Dreghorn 9 August 1848 Auchinleck, Commondyke, Cronberry, Hurlfold, Lugar, Mauchline, Muirkirk 20 May 1850 Cumnock Date Stations closed 11 August 1840 Howood 22 May 1848 Stewarton 15 April 1850 Busby
1850 - 1923: Glasgow and South Western Railway
Under the control of the Glasgow and South Western Railway, the former GPK&AR had several of its stations closed, and several new ones opened. Some stations, such as Stewarton (later called Cunninghamhead) were closed and then later reopened. A new station in Ayr was built in 1857 by the Ayr and Dalmellington Railway (who were absorbed by the G&SWR the following year), which became the new terminus for trains in the town, and as a result the original Ayr station was closed to passengers, although it remained open for goods traffic.
Trains continued to run via the Glasgow and Paisley Joint Railway - now jointly managed by the G&SWR and the Caledonian Railway - to Bridge Street station, which remained the Glasgow terminus of both companies until 1883. The City of Glasgow Union Railway opened St Enoch railway station in 1876; in 1883 it became the headquarters of the G&SWR, and a result all G&SWR passenger services were moved to St Enoch railway station. From Shields Junction, G&SWR trains traversed the City of Glasgow Union Railway to reach St Enoch.
In 1892 a new Troon station was built nearer the centre of the town. The original Troon station was closed and its line became a means of bypassing the loop built for the new station. The line was closed on 18 April 1966, with Glasgow trains being forced to use the newer line to reach Ayr, and vice versa.
Extensions and additional lines were added to the former GPK&AR during the Glasgow and South Western era: a line between Ayr and Mauchline was opened on 1 July 1870, with a connecting line to Cronberry opening on 1 July 1882; a branch to Darvel was opened south-east of Kilmarnock on 1 June 1896, a short branch to Catrine from Mauchline was opened on 1 September 1903, and an alternate route from Johnstone was Dalry was opened on 1 June 1905.
In 1923, the Glasgow and South Western Railway merged with six other major companies and several other smaller companies to form the London, Midland and Scottish Railway.
Stations opened / closed
Stations opened and closed during this period: Date Stations opened November 1850 Stewarton (later Cunninghamhead) 5 August 1859 Gailes, Monkton 1 September 1872 Crosshouse (previously Busby) 1 December 1876 Howwood (previously Howood) 1 February 1878 Montgreenan 1890 Springside 2 May 1892 Troon (new) Date Stations closed 1 July 1857 Ayr 2 January 1860 Dalry Junction 2 May 1892 Troon (old)
1923 - 1948: London, Midland and Scottish Railway
Stations closed during this period: Date Stations closed 28 October 1940 Monkton
1948 - 1994: Nationalisation and line closures
Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway Diagram of the railway c.1850
(stations with * are presently open)
With nationalisation in 1948, ownership of the former Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway fell to British Railways. Two years later the first of several line closures began with the line between Auchinleck and Cronberry closing to passenger traffic on 3 July 1950. However in 1951 services were reinstated for two weeks to accommodate trains travelling from Edinburgh to Ayr. The entire line from Auchinleck to Muirkirk then closed to regular passenger traffic on 1 October 1950, however the line was used up until 1976. Muirkirk station remained open on other lines until 5 October 1964, when it was closed as a result of the Beeching Axe.
Muirkirk was not the only casualty on this line from the Beeching Axe: the link between Irvine and Crosshouse, which had provided a direct link to Kilmarnock from Ardrossan (via a loop at Byrehill Junction) was closed to local passenger traffic on 6 April 1964, and closed completely 11 October 1965. The loop between Byrehill Junction and Dubbs Junction, which allowed Ardrossan trains to bypass Kilwinning, was also closed on 6 April 1964, however it remained open to passenger traffic until June 1977. During AyrLine electrification, this link was electrified.
The Dalry to Kilmarnock line had provided the G&SWR with a link between Kilmarnock and Glasgow (via the Paisley Canal Line) without having to use lines that were jointly operated with the Caledonian Railway. Again a result of the Beeching Axe, the line was closed to local passenger traffic on 18 April 1966. Despite this, the line remained open for long distance passenger services such as an overnight train from Glasgow to London via Paisley. The line closed to all traffic on 23 October 1973, was singled and later removed.
During the mid-1980s the line between Paisley and Ayr was electrified, with full electric passenger services beginning on 19 January 1987. The line between Kilmarnock and Cumnock was not electrified, and remains so to this day.
Stations opened / closed
Stations closed and reopened during this period: Date Stations closed 3 July 1950 Commondyke, Lugar 4 June 1951 Beith North (previously Beith) 10 December 1951 Cronberry 1 January 1955 Cunninghamhead 7 March 1955 Howwood, Hurlford, Montgreenan 6 April 1964 Dreghorn, Springside 5 October 1964 Muirkirk 6 December 1965 Auchinleck, Cumnock, Mauchline 14 February 1966 Elderslie 18 April 1966 Crosshouse, Milliken Park (previously Cochrane Mill) 2 January 1967 Bogside, Gailes Date Stations reopened 28 October 1988 Howwood 15 May 1989 Milliken Park
1994 - present: Privatisation and current operations
Privatisation resulted in the former GPK&AR being under the ownership of Railtrack, and then from 2002, Network Rail. The line between Paisley and Ayr is now part of the Ayrshire Coast Line (which also incorporates the former Ardrossan Railway), and the remaining line from Kilmarnock to Cumnock is part of the Glasgow South Western Line. Local services are now run by First ScotRail on behalf of Strathclyde Partnership for Transport.
Stations opened during this period: Date Stations opened 5 September 1994 Prestwick International Airport
Connections to other lines
- Ardrossan Railway at Kilwinning and Dubbs Junction
- Ayr and Dalmellington Railway at Falkland Junction
- Ayr to Mauchline Branch and associated lines at Prestwick, Falkland Junction, (near Newton-on-Ayr station) and Mauchline
- Bridge of Weir Railway at Elderslie
- Dalry and North Johnstone Line at Brownhill Junction, north east of Dalry
- Darvel Branch at Hurlford Junction, south east of Kilmarnock
- Glasgow, Barrhead and Kilmarnock Joint Railway at Kilmarnock
- Glasgow, Dumfries and Carlisle Railway at Cumnock
- Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway at Paisley Gilmour Street
- Kilmarnock and Troon Railway at Barassie and Kilmarnock
- Paisley Canal Line at Elderslie and at Shields Junction
- ^ a b Warden, p. vi
- ^ a b c d e f g h i Stephenson Locomotive Society, p. 2
- ^ a b c Awdry, p. 77
- ^ Whishaw, p. 114
- ^ a b c Awdry, p. 78
- ^ a b c Stephenson Locomotive Society, p. 6
- ^ Butt, p. 50
- ^ Wham, p. 54
- ^ Wham, p. 57
- ^ Awdry, p. 84
- ^ Robertson
- ^ Lewin, p. 36
- ^ Awdry, p. 98
- ^ Butt, p. 165
- ^ Awdry, p.76
- ^ a b c d e f g Whishaw, p. 118
- ^ a b c Hamilton Ellis, Vol 1, (1954), P113.
- ^ a b c d e f Stephenson, p. 24
- ^ a b c Stephenson, p. 5
- ^ a b c d e All tabled opening/closing dates from Butt, R.V.J. unless otherwise noted
- ^ a b Wham, page 57
- ^ Butt, p. 22
- ^ a b Stansfield, p. 9
- ^ a b Stansfield, page 13
- ^ Stansfield, p. 20
- ^ Stansfield, p. 11
- ^ Stansfield, p. 16
- ^ Wham, page 56
- ^ a b Stansfield, p. 12
- ^ a b Stansfield, p. 29
- ^ Stansfield, page 25
- ^ Hurst, page 40
- ^ a b Stansfield, p. 27
- ^ a b Stansfield, page 18
- ^ Paisley Gilmour Street received new platform indicators when the Gourock Line was electrified. The Platform 1 indicator - the Platform to Ayr - was provided with positions for West Coast Main Line Stations served from the platform at that time
- ^ ScotRail brochure
- Awdry, Christopher (1990). Encyclopaedia of British Railway Companies. Sparkford: Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 1-8526-0049-7. OCLC 19514063.
- British Rail (ScotRail) (1987). "The Rebirth of AyrLine: Electrification to Ayr / Ardrossan / Largs - 1986/1987". British Rail (ScotRail) (hosted by Railwaysarchive.co.uk). http://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/docSummary.php?docID=833. Retrieved 2008-05-15.
- Butt, R. V. J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations: details every public and private passenger station, halt, platform and stopping place, past and present (1st ed.). Sparkford: Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 1-8526-0508-1. OCLC 60251199.
- Hurst, Geoffrey (1992). Register of Closed Railways: 1948-1991. Worksop, Nottinghamshire: Milepost Publications. ISBN 0-9477-9618-5.
- Ellis, (Cuthbert) Hamilton (1954). British Railway History: An Outline from the Accession of William IV to the Nationalisation of the Railways. Volume 1: 1830-1876. London: George Allen and Unwin Ltd. OCLC 25208298.
- Ellis, (Cuthbert) Hamilton (1959). British Railway History: An Outline from the Accession of William IV to the Nationalisation of the Railways. Volume 2: 1877-1847. London: George Allen and Unwin Ltd. OCLC 10930826.
- Lewin, Henry Grote (1925). Early British Railways. A short history of their origin & development 1801-1844. London: The Locomotive Publishing Co Ltd. OCLC 11064369.
- Robertson, C.J.A. (1983). The Origins of the Scottish Railway System: 1722-1844 (1st ed.). Edinburgh: John Donald Publishers Ltd. ISBN 0-8597-6088-X.
- Stansfield, G. (1999). Ayrshire & Renfrewshire's Lost Railways. Ochiltree: Stenlake Publishing. ISBN 1-8403-3077-5.
- Stephenson Locomotive Society (1950). The Glasgow and South Western Railway 1850–1923. London: Stephenson Locomotive Society. OCLC 12241057.
- Warden, John (1842). The Glasgow and Ayr and Glasgow and Greenock Railway Companion. Glasgow: John Morrison. OCLC 181873832.
- Wham, Alasdair (1997). The Lost Railway Lines of Ayrshire : Ayrshire Railway Walks. Wigtown: G.C. Book Publishers. ISBN 1-8723-5027-5. OCLC 38356283.
- Whishaw, Francis (1842) . The Railways of Great Britain and Ireland practically described and illustrated (2nd ed.). London: John Weale (1840 publisher - Simpkin, Marshall & Co.). OCLC 36383414.
- RAILSCOT on Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway
- March 1843 timetable from Bradshaw's Railway Monthly (XVI)
Historical Scottish railway companies Primary companies Caledonian Railway
Aberdeen Railway · Alloa Railway · Alyth · Arbroath and Forfar · Busby Railway · Cathcart District · Cleland and Midcalder · Clydesdale Junction · CR Main Line · CR Douglas Branch · CR Hamilton Branch · CR Hamiltonhill Branch · CR The Switchback · Crieff Junction · Crieff and Comrie · Crieff and Methven Junction · Dumfries, Lochmaben and Lockerbie · Dunblane, Doune and Callander · Dundee and Perth · Dundee and Perth and Aberdeen · Forfar and Brechin · General Terminus and Glasgow Harbour · Glasgow and Garnkirk · Glasgow Central Railway · Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock · Greenock and Wemyss Bay · Hamilton and Strathaven · Lanarkshire and Ayrshire · Lanarkshire and Dunbartonshire · Leadhills and Wanlockhead · Lochearnhead, St Fillans and Comrie · Paisley and Barrhead District · Perth, Almond Valley and Methven · Polloc and Govan · Rutherglen and Coatbridge · Scottish Central · Scottish Midland Junction · Scottish North Eastern · Solway Junction · Symington, Biggar and Broughton · Talla Railway · Wishaw and ColtnessIndependent lines worked by the Caledonian Railway: Callander and Oban · Killin Railway
Glasgow and South
Western RailwayArdrossan Railway · Ardrossan and Johnstone · Ayr and Dalmellington · Ayr and Maybole Junction · Ayr to Mauchline · Ayrshire and Wigtownshire · Barrhead Branch · Bridge of Weir Railway · Cairn Valley · Caledonian and Dunbartonshire Junction · Castle Douglas and Dumfries · Dalry and North Johnstone · Darvel Branch · Girvan and Portpatrick Junction · Glasgow, Dumfries and Carlisle · Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr · Greenock and Ayrshire · Kilmarnock and Troon · Largs Branch · Maidens and Dunure · Maybole and Girvan · Paisley and Renfrew · Paisley Canal Line
Great North of
Scotland RailwayAberdeen and Turriff · Aboyne and Braemar · Alford Valley · Banff, Macduff and Turriff Junction · Banff, Portsoy and Strathisla · Boddam Branch · Deeside Railway · Denburn Valley · Formartine and Buchan · Inverury and Old Meldrum Junction · Keith and Dufftown · Moray Coast · Morayshire Railway · St Combs Light Railway · Strathspey Railway
Buckie and Portessie Branch · Dingwall and Skye · Duke of Sutherland · Findhorn Railway · Fortrose Branch · Inverness and Aberdeen Junction · Inverness and Aviemore Direct · Inverness and Nairn · Inverness and Perth Junction · Inverness and Ross-shire · Kyle of Lochalsh Extension · Perth and Dunkeld · Sutherland and Caithness · Sutherland RailwayIndependent lines worked by the Highland Railway: Dornoch Light Railway · Wick and Lybster Light Railway
North British RailwayAberlady, Gullane and North Berwick · Ballochney · Bathgate and Coatbridge · Blane Valley · Border Counties Railway · Border Union Railway · Campsie Branch · Carlisle and Silloth Bay Railway and Dock Company · Coatbridge Branch · Dunfermline and Queensferry · Edinburgh and Bathgate · Edinburgh and Dalkeith · Edinburgh and Glasgow · Edinburgh and Hawick · Edinburgh, Leith and Newhaven Railway · Edinburgh and Northern · Edinburgh Suburban and Southside Junction · Forth and Clyde Junction · Glasgow, Bothwell, Hamilton and Coatbridge · Glasgow City and District · Glasgow, Dumbarton and Helensburgh · Glasgow and Milngavie Junction · Glasgow, Yoker and Clydebank · Kelvin Valley Railway · Kirkcaldy and District Railway · Kincardine Line · Leadburn, Linton and Dolphinton · Monkland and Kirkintilloch · Monkland Railways · Mallaig Extension · NBR North Berwick Branch · North British, Arbroath and Montrose · Stirling and Dunfermline · Strathendrick and Aberfoyle · Slamannan · Slamannan and Borrowstounness · West Highland Railway · Wilsontown, Morningside and Coltness Joint lines Other lines
- 1 History
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