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Glasgow Central Station

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Clyde Viaduct
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West Street
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Glasgow Central Station
(Caledonian Railway)
 

This station and associated lines are open. This is the main terminus in Glasgow for services to the south, as well as many local services. 

Survey To be entered
Engineers Crouch & Hogg
Act To be entered
Contractors William Arrol
Opened 1 August 1879
Closed No
Clickable map of the Glasgow Central Station
Glasgow Central Station from a Caledonian Railway timetable
Glasgow Central Station from a Caledonian Railway timetable

Glasgow Central following renovation
Glasgow Central following renovation
 

The entire glass canopy has been reglazed.
The entire glass canopy has been reglazed.

Local area

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This station has both a high level and a low level. The high level station is a major terminus and the low level station is a station on the Strathclyde Passenger Transport network.

This terminus station is in the Centre of Glasgow, on the north bank of the River Clyde. All the approach lines to the station come from the south and include lines from Stranraer, Ayr, Ardrossan, Largs, Wemyss Bay, Gourock, Greenock, Paisley, Dumfries, Kilmarnock, Barrhead, East Kilbride, Neilston, Cathcart, Newton, Edinburgh, Hamilton, Motherwell, Whifflet, Coatbridge, and Rutherglen. Long distance express trains run to most of the major cities in England and Wales.

Under the station is Glasgow Central (Low Level). For journeys north one has to either walk or catch a (frequent) connecting bus to Glasgow Queen Street (High Level). 

The terminus was built for the Caledonian Railway to replace a more unsatifactory station on the south bank of the Clyde called Bridge Street. The first version of the station was approached by two lines across the Clyde on a bridge (now demolished) which ran to four platforms. This older section of the station was to the east side of the current site where platforms 1,2,3,4 are today. The original terminus had no canopy. The station expanded slightly until a major expansion when Bridge Street station, which had become a through station at two of its platforms, was demolished and a new larger bridge over the Clyde built next to the older one. This bridge is the one presently in use today. Using both bridges a much larger station was built. With re-signalling the deteriorating older bridge became redundant and was removed in the 1960s. The station today is an A listed structure.

Today the station is a bustling location (70,000 people pass through the station every day) with shops within it. The glass canopy has recently been repaired (including 30,000 panes of glass). The travel centre will shortly be handed over from ScotRail to Virgin trains.

There is short term car parking at the station and a NCP carpark nearby.

Chronology

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Description of route

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Bridge Street station was not very convenient for Glasgow being on the south bank of the Clyde. This station and its approach lines extended the railway north over the River and into the city.

Glasgow Central (High Level)

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This station has approaches from Paisley, Barrhead and Rutherglen. (See also drawing of station above). The station has taken over much of the traffic which used to use Glasgow St Enoch's station. Below the station is Glasgow Central (Low Level) on the Glasgow Central Railway.

River Clyde Bridge

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When extended across the River Clyde an original bridge, four tracks wide, was built. Three of these tracks approached the new station and the forth was a carriage siding. During the 1906 expansion of the station more approach lines were required and a second larger bridge was opened immediately to the west of the original bridge. This bridge remains in use today, the older bridge was dismantled except for its support which remain today.

Bridge Street

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This terminus was joint built by the Glasgow and South Western Railway and Caledonian Railway as a terminus for Ayrshire traffic and, in the case of the Caledonian, Greenock traffic. The terminus was located on the south bank of the River Clyde. The G&SW was to cease using the station when St Enoch's was opened, but it was to be some time before that company gave up its right to use the station. The Caledonian Railway, dis-satisified with the station as its southern Glasgow terminus, extended the railway north to Central Station. Initially Bridge Street remained open, but during the expansion of Glasgow central in 1906 the station closed.

Small portions of the station remain today, these include building immediately to the east of the sidings just to the south of the River Clyde viaduct.

West Street

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This was the Glasgow terminus of the Glasgow and Paisley Joint Railway. The station was approached through an archway similar to contemporary stations elsewhere. The station was not convenient for Glasgow and the line was extended to Bridge Street.

Eglinton Street

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This fine station was located in a cutting on the extension of the South Side (Gushetfaulds) terminus to Bridge Street. To the north of the station the main line elevates above street level as it runs to Bridge Street and to the south the main line enters a tunnel and turns hard east to run to Rutherglen.

The platforms of the station have been removed, but the style of the station can still be seen at Gleneagles where the northbound platform building and its canopies are similar. The station had six of platforms as the western side of the Cathcart circle branches off here to run south to Pollockshields East. There were four on the main line and two on the branch at a higher level.

Larkfield Junction

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Here the Polloc and Govan Railway's South Side to Windmillcroft Quay line was met by the later extension to Bridge Street.

Muirhouse Junction

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The Glasgow, Barrhead and Neilston Direct Railway originally ran into South Side terminus adjacent to the South Side terminus of the Polloc and Govan Railway to Rutherglen and Motherwell. This alignment was to be extended by the City of Glasgow Union Railway to St Enochs station which was used by the Glasgow and South Western Railway. The Cathcart District Railway trains from Pollockshields East were to be diverted to Bridge Street and Glasgow Central by means of a new line from Muirhouse Junction to Eglinton Street.


Page created on 20/01/1998
Page last edited on: 11/03/2012
Contact: Ewan Crawford