Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway
|Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr|
|Principal stations (stations in bold are open)
The railway first opened on 5 August 1839 between Ayr and Irvine, with the majority of the remaining line opening open 21 July 1840. The line between Dalry and Kilmarnock opened 4 April 1843, and in May 1848 a final line opened between between Irvine and Kilmarnock, 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 a year later the Paisley and Renfrew Railway. The last line to open by the original company was a branch to Muirkirk from Auchinleck on 9 August 1848. Finally, the railway amalgamated with the Glasgow, Dumfries and Carlisle Railway (GD&CR) on 28 October 1850 to form what became the Glasgow and South Western Railway.
Connections to other Lines
- Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway at Paisley Gilmour Street
- Paisley Canal Line at Elderslie and at Shields Junction
- Bridge of Weir Railway at Elderslie
- Kilbarchan Loop Line at Brownhill Junction, north east of Dalry
- Ardrossan Railway at Kilwinning and Dubbs Junction
- Kilmarnock and Troon Railway at Barassie and Kilmarnock
- Ayr to Mauchline Branch and associated lines at Prestwick, Falkland Junction, (near Newton-on-Ayr station) and Mauchline
- Ayr and Dalmellington Railway at Falkland Junction
- Glasgow, Barrhead and Kilmarnock Joint Railway at Kilmarnock
- Darvel Branch at Hurlford Junction, south west of Kilmarnock
- Glasgow, Dumfries and Carlisle Railway at Cumnock
From the start, in 1837, the line between Glasgow Bridge Street railway station and Paisley Gilmour Street station, the Glasgow and Paisley Joint Railway, was operated as a joint undertaking by the Glasgow, Paisley and Greenock Railway (latter part of the Caledonian Railway) and the Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway.
Bridge Street Station remained the Glasgow terminus of both railways until 1883. The City of Glasgow Union Railway opened St Enoch railway station in 1876; and in 1883 it became the headquarters of the Glasgow and South Western Railway. The Glasgow and South Western Railway, by then the owner of the Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway, moved its passenger services to St Enoch railway station. From Shields Junction, G&SWR trains traversed the City of Glasgow Union Railway to reach St Enoch railway station.
- Dalry to Kilmarnock - Local passenger traffic on 18 April 1966; Total 1 October 1973.
- Irvine to Crosshouse - Local services on 6 April 1964.
- Muirkirk Branch - Local passenger traffic on 3 July 1950 (Auchinleck to Cronberry).
The Dalry to Kilmarnock line provided the G&SWR with link between Kilmarnock and Glasgow (via the Paisley Canal Line) without having to use lines that were jointly operated with the Caledonian Railway. Even after local services were withdrawn it remained open for long distance passenger services such as an overnight train from Glasgow to London via Paisley. Some of the final passenger trains ran when the Cook Street bridge was replaced on the WCML approaches to Glasgow Central railway station resulting in London Euston trains already diverted from the WCML to the former Glasgow and South Western Railway due to electrification works being further diverted during the Glasgow Fair weekend of July 1973.
The line between Irvine and Crosshouse provided a direct link from Kilmarnock to Ardrossan.
The majority of the railway is still operational today as part of the Ayrshire Coast Line, however several stations have now closed; some of which have been re-opened at or close to the original location.
- Butt, R. V. J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations. Patrick Stephens Ltd, Sparkford.
- Stansfield, G. (1999). Ayrshire & Renfrewshire's Lost Railways, Stenlake Publishing, Catrine.