Wemyss Bay

Location type


Name and dates

Wemyss Bay (1905-)

Station code: WMS National Rail ScotRail
Where: Inverclyde, Scotland
Opened on the Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway.
Opened on the Caledonian Steam Packet Company.
Opened on the Caledonian MacBrayne.
Open on the Inverclyde Lines.


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 clock tower, mock exposed timber on gable ends and a covered walkway to the pier ending with a pair of small towers. The station benefited from the Caledonian Railway^s awareness of passenger flows and how to design station to allow passengers to flow from ferry to train and vice versa. The station was designed by James Miller and Donald A Matheson.

In addition to operating the railway the Caledonian Railway operated steamers via the Caledonian Steam Packet Company, effectively extending the railway to the Firth of Clyde piers.

There was a signal box (opened 1893) built on the approach to the station, on the west side and with a signal bridge just to its east. In 1935 the box took over the Wemyss Bay Shed signal box, just to the north.

A line on the west side of the station dropped down a ramp on the west side of the station to the north part of the pier head. This was the baggage line. Wemyss Bay Goods yard was reached by reversal, its goods shed being close to the A78, running down the rear side of the box to reach the goods shed and loading bank.

The box closed in 1967, replaced by Paisley Power Box. The baggage line and goods yard are closed.

Despite conversion of the pier for roll-on-roll-off ferry services to Rothesay Pier the facility is still alongside the station, on the east side of the pier.

The station is now a two platform station, the lines serving the east island platform having been lifted.

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


Caledonian MacBrayne operate a car carrying ferry service to Rothesay Pier on the Isle of Bute.

Caledonian MacBrayne - Wemyss Bay


Station terminus pier

External links

Canmore site record
NLS Collection OS map of 1892-1914
NLS Collection OS map of 1944-67


  /  /1862Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Act receives Royal assent for a line between Greenock and Wemyss Bay and a pier at Wemyss Bay.
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.
  /  /1877Gillies & Campbell
PS Sheila was built by Caird & Co for Gillies & Campbell for the Wemyss Bay to Rothesay Pier service.
  /  /1899Greenock and Wemyss Bay Railway
Authorisation to double line, enlarge Wemyss Bay pier and power to dredge at pier.
  /  /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.
05/06/1967Glasgow South Bank Electrification Gourock Extension Railway (Caledonian Railway)
Gourock and Wemyss Bay lines electrified.