Banavie Pier

Location type

Station

Names and dates

Banavie [1st] (1895-1901)
Banavie Pier (1901-1939)

Note: text in square brackets is added for clarity and was not part of the location's name.

Opened on the West Highland Railway.

Description

This station was the terminus of a short branch built by the West Highland Railway to the Caledonian Canal at Banavie. The branch allowed interchange with the steamers operating on the route to Inverness. The station was intentionally above Neptune's Staircase to minimise the number of locks in the onward journey to Inverness, Muirtown Basin.

The building is similar to the other stations of the West Highland Railway. The platform was on the west side of a loop, the line continuing past the station to a headshunt from which, by reversal a siding which reached the top of the canal embankment alongside the south bank of the canal. There was a goods siding alongside the station loop, on its east side and approached from the headshunt to the north east.

The station opened in 1895, after the rest of the West Highland Railway. Between Banavie and Banavie Junction [1st] (now Fort William Junction) was the large Lochy Viaduct [Fort William].

Connecting with the trains were steamers such as the SS Gondolier, operating the service from the 1890s, which ran north via the Caledonian Canal and Loch Ness to Inverness. The Gondolier was later sunk as a block ship at Scapa Flow in 1939.

In 1901 the Mallaig Extension (West Highland Railway) opened, extending the West Highland Railway west to the new port of Mallaig. A new Banavie station opened at the foot of the locks. The original terminus remained open, as its purpose was interchange with steamers, but was renamed Banavie Pier. It was now on a short branch from Banavie Junction [2nd]. The branch closed to passengers in 1939. The line closed in 1951.

The station building still stands, today it is a house.

Local

To the west is Neptune's Staircase, a series of connected locks on the Caledonian Canal.

Tags

Station terminus

Facilities

Gaelic name: Banbhaidh


Dates

02/09/1939West Highland Railway
Banavie Pier to Fort William (Banavie Junction [2nd]) closed to passengers. By closure the service was meagre - a service from Fort William [1st] on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and a reverse working on Tuesday, Thursdays and Saturdays. Banavie Junction [2nd] to Mallaig Junction remains open to passengers as part of the Mallaig Extension (West Highland Railway).
06/08/1951West Highland Railway
Banavie Pier to Fort William (Banavie Junction [2nd]) (excluded) closed to goods and completely. Banavie Junction [2nd] to Mallaig Junction remains open to passengers as part of the Mallaig Extension (West Highland Railway).

Books

All Stations to Mallaig!: West Highland Line Since Nationalisation
Argyll and the Highlands Last Days of Steam

Argyll and the Highlands' Lost Railways

Ben Nevis and Fort William, The Mamores and The Grey Corries, Kinlochleven and Spean Bridge (OS Explorer Map)

History of the Railways of the Scottish Highlands: West Highland Railway v. 1

History of the Railways of the Scottish Highlands: West Highland Railway v. 1

Iron Road to the Isles: A Travellers and Tourist Guide to the West Highland Lines

Iron Roads to the Isles: A Travellers and Tourists Souvenir Guide to the West Highland Lines

Mountain Moor and Loch on the Route of the West Highland Railway

On West Highland Lines

Railway World Special: West Highland Lines

Rannan Rathad Iarainn nan Eilean =: The West Highland Line

Road To The Isles Dvd: Part One The West Highland Line Between Crianlarich to Fort William, From the Drivers Cab Of A Class 37, With The Caledonian Sleeper
The Mallaig Railway: The West Highland Extension 1897-1901 (RCAHMS Broadsheet)
The New Railway: The Earliest Years of the West Highland Line

The Story of the West Highland

The Story of the West Highland: The 1940s LNER Guide to the Line

The West Highland Railway

The West Highland Railway (Railways of the Scottish Highlands)

The West Highland Railway 120 Years

Trossachs and West Highlands: Exploring the Lost Railways (Local History Series)

Victorian Travel on the West Highland Line: By Mountain, Moor and Loch in 1894

Walks from the West Highland Railway (Cicerone Guide)

West Highland Line: Great Railway Journeys Through Time

West Highland Railway
West Highland Railway (History of the Railways of the Scottish Highlands v. 1): West Highland Railway v. 1
West Highland Railway: Plans, Poltics and People