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North British, Arbroath and Montrose Railway

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Letham Grange Resort, Country Mansion, Hotel and Golf Complex, near Arbroath, Angus, Scotland


North British, Arbroath and Montrose Railway

This line is open. The line is part of the East Coast Main Line and is double track except for a bridge to the south of Montrose station. The line was owned by the North British Railway and was in effect a continuation of that company's Tay Bridge line northwards towards Aberdeen.

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Clickable map of the North British, Arbroath and Montrose Railway.

Local area 

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This line runs from north of Arbroath, through countryside, by the basin at Montrose, by Montrose and then north to the former Kinnaber Junction. The only large town is Montrose.

Chronology 

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Description of route

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From Arbroath to Montrose.

St Vigean's Junction  

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The line left the older Arbroath and Forfar Railway here at a south facing junction.

Letham Grange  

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This station is closed.

Cauldcots  

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This station is closed.

Inverkeilor

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This former station is closed. Little remains of the station however the signalbox remains open here and there is a siding.

Lunan Bay  

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This station is closed.

Usan Signalbox

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There was never a station here. The signalbox here controls the southern end of the single track approach to Montrose. The line is single track as it crosses to substancial viaducts to the south of Montrose where the line redoubles. The whole route was built as a single track one and this is the only section to not be later doubled. This is the only section of the East Coast Mainline to be single track.

Montrose Harbour  

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The track into the harbour has been lifted and a buffer stop remains on a headshunt for the nearby station sidings. This headshunt line formerly continued to the harbour.

To the south are two substancial viaducts which carry the single track line from Usan to Montrose. The original viaducts here were built by Sir Thomas Bouch whose Tay Bridge fell. Because of this the two bridges were tested to destruction and then demolished and replaced before the line was opened.

Montrose (North British)

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The 'Sprinter' shown on the left is approaching from the south. In the foreground are a number of flat pallet wagons sitting at a loading dock. The goods shed shown on the right is to be closed and the operation moved to Laurencekirk on the Aberdeen Railway. A new bypass is to pass through this location. The goods shed was on the East side of the station. 

Montrose North Junction  

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This junction was located immediately to the north of the station. There was a short line from here to Broomfield Junction which gave access to the Montrose and Bervie Railway. The North British Railway's locomotive shed was to the east of the line just to the south of the junction. The site is now a small industrial estate.

Broomfield Junction  

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There were two junctions here. To the north the original Aberdeen Railway's Montrose Branch was met by the (Montrose and Bervie Railway at a south (Montrose) facing junction. To the south of this at a north facing junction the Aberdeen Railway's Montrose Branch was met by a short line from Montrose (North British).

There was a station here and a signalbox which was bombed in the Second World War. The rebuilt box, an ad-hoc affair, remained such until closure.

Hillside  

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This station is closed an nothing remains. Nearby is a grain depot which has disused sidings.

Kinnaber Junction  

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The line met the older Aberdeen Railway at this north facing junction. The original alignment of the Montrose line here had a double reverse curve and a pair of sidings. This was straightened out and sidings lifted on formation of British Railways. The North British Railway had running powers from here north to Aberdeen as the government was concerned that there was a monopoly on the route to Aberdeen from the south. Of course the company had to pay the Caledonian Railway for access and shared in the costs of the rebuilding of various stations in Aberdeen.

Kinnaber was the scene of racing trains when the east coast lines (Great Northern Railway, North Eastern Railway and North British Railway) and west coast lines (London and North Western Railway and Caledonian Railway) were trying to prove which route was the quickest from London to Aberdeen. Kinnaber was the most important location in these races as whichever train got to this location first would reach Aberdeen first, there being no other route. It is said that sometimes the east coast trains were held up for the west coast trains - the junction signalbox belonging to the Caledonian Railway.


Page created on 16/04/1997
Page last edited on: 17/08/2016
Contact: Ewan Crawford