A History of Britain’s Railways

Knightswood Waggonway

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Knightswood Waggonway Railway

This tramway is closed.

Survey To be entered
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Contractors To be entered
Opened ~1750


Map in preparation
Clickable Schematic of route [Key]

Local area


The Knightswood area, by Anniesland, to the north-west of Glasgow was extensively mined. There were many ironstone and coal mines in the Woodside and Knightswood collieries. John Dixon, who bought the Dumbarton Glassworks in 1750, opened a waggonway around 1750 to connect the Woodside colliery to the River Clyde at Yoker. The waggonway was closed by 1775.

By 1790 the Forth and Clyde Canal's extension from Glasgow to Bowling had opened and from that date coal from the Knightswood pits was carried to the canal instead. By the 1860s, a tramway ran from Anniesland Road, by the Skaterig Brick & Tile works to ironstone pits; this may have been a small part of the original waggonway. To the west a tramway ran from a basin to the immediately to the east of Cloberhill Bridge on the canal to a coal pit to the south. To the east a further tramway ran from from a coal pit by the canal at Govan cottage (now Temple/Kelvindale) via a number of ironstone pits (2 branches to the south, junctions facing west) to near Temple of Garscube. The area to the south was littered with closed coal pits. To the north east of Knightswood and to the north west of Temple of Garscube was Garscube Iron Works, with a number of coal mines, scattered buildings and a flooded old quarry.

Once the Stobcross Railway was opened, two branches were opened into the area. A line was built which ran from a south facing junction to the north of what is now Anniesland station westwards under Bearsden Road to a number of timber depots. At its extremity the line in fact turned gradually through 180 degrees and ran to a depot by Great Western Road which was approached from the west. A further depot was reached by a reversal of direction at the depot into a further depot. Another line was opened from a north facing junction to the north of what is now Anniesland station, but to the south of the previously mentioned branch. This branch ran west to various coalmines, crossing Bearsden Road on the level. This was a relatively short lived branch, the route now long having been built over.



Description of Route


The waggonway is likely to have run along routes which are now occupied by road and 'new' developments. I do not have an accurate map of the route while open, but I suspect it ran along a route similar to;

Page created on 15/10/2001
Page last edited on: 17/03/2012
Contact: Ewan Crawford