Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway

Introduction

This railway is open to passenger traffic. It was originally single track, then largely doubled and is presently single again.

The line is particularly notable for the very fine terminus at Wemyss Bay.

Wemyss Bay station and line are promoted and supported by the Friends of Wemyss Bay .






Dates

  /  /1862Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Act receives Royal assent for a line between Greenock and Wemyss Bay and a pier at Wemyss Bay.
  /  /1863Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Line extension and replacement pier authorised.
01/05/1865Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway Wemyss Bay Steamboat Company
Operates vessels between Wemyss Bay, Largs Pier and Millport Pier.
15/05/1865Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Line opened from Port Glasgow through southern Greenock to Wemyss Bay. Stations at Upper Greenock, Ravenscraig, Inverkip and Wemyss Bay.
  /  /1869Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway Wemyss Bay Steamboat Company
The Wemyss Bay Steamboat Company ceases operation.
01/08/1893Greenock and Wemyss Bay RailwayCaledonian Railway
Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway absorbed by Caledonian Railway.
  /  /1899Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Authorisation to double line, enlarge Wemyss Bay pier and power to dredge at pier.
02/06/1902Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Port Glasgow to Upper Greenock doubled.
  /  /1903Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Wemyss Bay station and pier re-built in grand style by the Caledonian Railway.
01/06/1903Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Doubling of Dunrod Loop to Wemyss Bay opened.
  /  /1904Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Extension of time until 1907 to complete widening works.
  /  /1907Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Extension of time until 1910 to complete widening works.
  /  /1909Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Extension of time until 1913 to complete widening works.
  /  /1913Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Extension of time until 1916 to complete widening works.
  /  /1915Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Extension of time until 1919 to complete widening works.
  /  /1944Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Ravenscraig closed.
  /  /1967Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Upper Greenock closed.
  /  /1967Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Branchton station opened.
  /  /1971Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Containerbase Junction opened, a link to the former Greenock and Ayrshire Railway giving access to Greenock Containerbase Sidings (Greenock Container Port).
  /  /1978Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
IBM Halt opened.
  /  /1983Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
IBM Halt renamed IBM.
  /  /1990Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Whinhill station opened.
  /  /1991Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Containerbase Junction to Greenock Containerbase Sidings officially closed (?). (Track remained in place for years.)
25/06/1994Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
The driver and a passenger are killed when a train de-rails near what later became Drumfrochar station, after vandals placed concrete blocks on the line, and struck a bridge.
  /05/1998Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Drumfrochar station opened
  /08/2011Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Disused land to be allowed to be used by the Friends of Wemyss Bay as a vegetable garden.
09/12/2018Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Trains stop calling at IBM.

Locations along the line

These locations are along the line.

This junction is west of Port Glasgow station. It is the junction between the Glasgow to Greenock line (the 1841 Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway) and the 1Wemyss Bay line (the 865 Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway).
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See also
Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway
Fairburn 2-6-4T no 42265 diverges south at Wemyss Bay Junction shortly after leaving Port Glasgow on 5 June 1962. The train is the 5.13pm Glasgow ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 05/06/1962
Scene half a mile west of Port Glasgow station on 5 June 1962. Fairburn 2-6-4T no 42275 has just taken the Gourock line at Wemyss Bay Junction with ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 05/06/1962
Wemyss Bay Junction is one of those junctions named after the place
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David Panton 01/09/2010
A Sunday morning service from Glasgow Central in April 2007 takes the left fork for Wemyss Bay, at the junction bearing the same name, just to the ...
John Furnevel 29/04/2007
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This junction opened with a new line to serve the Greenock Container Port, built on the site of Greenock Princes Pier station in 1969.
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Looking east to Containerbase Junction from the eastern portal of the G&SW Inchgreen Branch Cartburn Tunnel. The line was altered at Containerbase ...
Ewan Crawford //1988
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This is a single bore 930ft tunnel carrying a single line. The line was doubled by opening a second single bore tunnel to the immediate south, Cartsburn Tunnel South. The second tunnel is slightly longer at the east end and is now disused.
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Looking east away from the eastern portals of the two Wemyss Bay Cartsburn tunnels. The line was originally single track and a second, now redundant, ...
Ewan Crawford //1988
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The east portals of Greenock^s southern Cartsburn Tunnels, photographed on Sunday 11 August 1963 looking towards Wemyss Bay. The second (south) tunnel ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 11/08/1963
42057 climbs to Upper Greenock with Wemyss Bay train ...
John Robin 11/08/1963
A view of the twin tunnels at Cartsburn in the summer of 1963, looking west from the GSWR overbridge carrying the route to Princes Pier. See image ...
John Robin 11/08/1963
42057 approaching east end on Sunday Glasgow - Wemyss Bay train. Cartsburn Twin Tunnels. ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 11/08/1963
4 of 9 images. more


This is a single platform station, the platform erected on the south side of the single track line. The station is immediately west of Cartsburn Tunnel.
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Looking west, 334040 pulls away from Whinhill with a service for Wemyss Bay ...
Graham Morgan 25/10/2006
318265 approaching Whinhill with a service for Glasgow Central ...
Graham Morgan 11/09/2007
A Wemyss Bay - Glasgow Central service calls at Whinhill on 1 November formed by unit 334 015. ...
David Panton 01/11/2008
Looking west towards Whinhill as a Class 318 calls in 2001. The course of the lifted parallel line through the second Cartsburn Tunnel can be seen in ...
Bill Roberton //2001
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This was Walkinshaw and Co^s paper mill in the south of Greenock, served by a steeply graded ^puggy line^ from Berryards Junction, east of the Upper Greenock station on the Wemyss Bay railway. Access to the branch was via headshunts on the south side of the main line, which made a trailing connection at the junction. The branch was sufficiently steep that wagons were required to be ...

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This junction was east of Upper Greenock station. It was the junction for the steeply graded line (opened 1890) to Walkinshaw and Co.^s Overton Paper Mill (the ^puggy line^). Whinhill station (opened 1990) is just to the east today. The paper mill^s mile long branch was reached by a reversing spur east of the junction, the spur was approached from the west. To the west, and on the ...

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BR Standard 2-6-4T no 80058 approaching Berryyards Junction, east of Upper Greenock, on 11 August 1964 with the 4.25pm service to Wemyss Bay. This was ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 11/08/1964
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This was, from 1976, the Tate and Lyle factory in Greenock, known for its distinctive smell which lingered over the area. The factory has been demolished.
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At closure this was an island platform station with a canopied station building. Sidings for the Berryards Sugar Refinery were to the north, with Berryards Junction off to the east. The Upper Greenock Goods was off to the west, also north of the line. Access to the island platform was by subway from Lynedoch Street. There was a signal box at either end of the station.
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BR Standard Tank no 80118 arriving at Upper Greenock on 30 June 1964 with the 5.13pm Glasgow Central - Wemyss Bay. ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 30/06/1964
The 5.13pm Glasgow Central - Wemyss Bay restarting from Upper Greenock on 30 June 1964. Locomotive in charge is BR Standard Tank no 80118. ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 30/06/1964
Clayton D8524 leaving Upper Greenock on 13 August 1964 with the 5.13pm service to Wemyss Bay. This was the extent of the double track from Port ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 13/08/1964
BR standard 2-6-4T no 80110 approaching Upper Greenock on 13 August 1964 with the 5.30pm ex-Wemyss Bay. ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 13/08/1964
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A 380 calls at the single platform of Drumfrochar station in May 2019. ...
John Yellowlees 11/05/2019
334 023 calls at Drumfrochar on 12 November with a Wemyss Bay - Glasgow Central service. Located in the southwest suburbs of Greenock this station was ...
David Panton 12/11/2008
Entrance to Drumfrochar station on the Wemyss Bay line in July 2007, looking east towards Glasgow. ...
John Furnevel 29/07/2007
Drumfrochar, a new station on the line to Wemyss Bay. Looking to Port Glasgow. ...
Ewan Crawford //
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This is a single platform fairly modern station on the Wemyss Bay to Port Glasgow branch.
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Passengers wait for a delayed Glasgow train at Branchton on 29 July 2007. View west towards Wemyss Bay. ...
John Furnevel 29/07/2007
Branchton, between trains, looking towards Port Glasgow on 25 March 2011. The station only opened in 1967, two years after the Wemyss Bay branch had ...
Mark Bartlett 25/03/2011
Looking east at Branchton station with a class 303. ...
Ewan Crawford //
Quiet Sunday morning at Branchton on 29 July 2007. View over the station looking towards Wemyss Bay with the A78 off to the right. ...
John Furnevel 29/07/2007
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This was a single platform station on the east side of the line, with a siding opposite approached from the Wemyss Bay direction.
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Fairburn 2-6-4T no 42216 on a down train for Wemyss Bay photographed west of Greenock near the site of Ravenscraig station (closed 1944) on Sunday 11 ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 11/08/1963
Extract form a map included in the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland (1885) from my personal library (get him). Gourock stands alone, the line going no ...
David Panton 30/08/2020
A Wemyss Bay - Glasgow train passing the remains of Ravenscraig station, south west of Greenock, in February 1966. The station, opened in 1865, once ...
Colin Miller /02/1966
42216 approaches Ravenscraig with Wemyss Bay train. ...
John Robin 11/08/1963
4 of 5 images. more


This loop is between Branchton and Inverkip. There is no station here.
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Clocherlee Quarry Railway
View north east over Dunrod Loop on the Wemyss Bay branch in August 1963. Taken from below the road bridge looking towards Greenock, with the signal ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 11/08/1963
Looking east at Dunrod loop ...
Ewan Crawford //
Caledonian Railway signals survive at Dunrod between Ravenscraig and Inverkip ...
John Robin 11/08/1963
3 of 3 images.


This was a pair of single track girder viaducts east of Inverkip station. Of the two, the later (the southern which built in 1903 when the line was double) remains in use, the other, the original of 1865, has had its girders removed although the piers remain. The viaducts crossed the Daff Burn, running in the steeply sided Daff Glen.
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View of the two viaducts to the east of Inverkip station. Left viaduct (original) reduced to piers only, right still in use. And I thought visiting ...
Ewan Crawford 03/01/2007
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This is a single platform station on the north side of a single line. With considerable expansion of Inverkip to the south with new house building in recent years a footbridge has been added to allow access to the south. At its height this was a superb small station.
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Inverkip seems to be semiotically challenged. Sign near Inverkip station (and school) seen on 12 June 2019. ...
David Panton 12/06/2019
Although there are still Class 314s around, 320s seem to have taken over their duties in Inverclyde - pending arrival of 385s. A Wemyss Bay to Glasgow ...
David Panton 12/06/2019
334 025 on a Wemyss Bay - Glasgow Central service at Inverkip on 15 October 2008. ...
David Panton 15/10/2008
Looking west towards Wemyss Bay from Inverkip on 29 July. ...
John Furnevel /07/2007
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There are two single bore tunnels just west of Inverkip on the line to Wemyss Bay. The present tunnel, the older dating from 1865, was retained,. The newer tunnel, a little to the south east of the original, slightly longer and dating from the doubling of 1903, is out of use. Both tunnels are on a gentle curve so that the line entering from the east turns southwards
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Clayton D8507 leaves Inverkip Tunnel on Sunday 11 August 1963 with a train of empty stock destined for Wemyss Bay. D8507 later received blue livery ...
G H Robin collection by courtesy of the Mitchell Library, Glasgow 11/08/1963
42057 about to enter Inverkip tunnel with train for Glasgow. ...
John Robin 11/08/1963
Clayton D8507 leaves Inverkip tunnel with Wemyss Bay train. ...
John Robin 11/08/1963
3 of 3 images.




This engine shed was on the west sde of the railway just north of Wemyss Bay station, north of the bridge over the A78.
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The original Wemyss Bay terminus occupied the extreme eastern part of the site of the present station. The frontage was a closer to the road and within today^s car park in front of the present station.
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This is one of the pre-eminent ^must see^ stations in Scotland. In 1905 it replaced an original Wemyss Bay [1st] station of 1865 on a slightly different orientation (see that entry for the 1865-1905 details). It is a terminus and a combined station and pier with a very fine concourse (with semi-circular ticket office supporting the glass roof), canopied platforms, main station building with a ...

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Exterior of Wemyss Bay station, on 25th July 2017. ...
David Bosher 25/07/2017
Wemyss Bay station on 12th May 1985, with a Class 303 unit in Strathclyde PTE livery awaiting its return to Glasgow Central . The poster proclaims ...
Mark Dufton 12/05/1985
Detail of the new Transport Trust plaque, unveiled at Wemyss Bay on 30th November 2019. ...
John Yellowlees 30/11/2019
The entry to the station from the carpark and town. There are often taxis waiting here. ...
Ewan Crawford 4/6/2004
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