Slamannan and Borrowstounness Railway
This railway was closed but has largely
been re-opened as the Bo'ness and Kinneil Railway by the Scottish Railway
The new Bo'ness station
This line runs through land which was formerly
mined, but is currently farmed, to the port of Bo'ness. This was once a thriving
port but has been eclipsed by the port of Grangemouth slightly further west.
Description of route
This railway ran from Causewayend, the terminus
of the Slamannan Railway,
located by the Union Canal to
Bo'ness on the Forth Estuary.
Causewayend Incline Foot
From a south facing junction with the Slamannan
Railway controlled by a signalbox called "Causewayend
Incline Foot" the line ran north to cross the Union
Canal. There may have been a station called "Causewayend" located
adjacent to the original terminus of the same name.
Manuel Low Level
There were high and low level stations at Manuel.
G.E. Langmuir said this was a very damp station in a cutting and he preferred
to wait at the high level station on the Edinburgh
and Glasgow Railway. The station was controlled by
a signalbox called "Manuel". The station had a single through platform
and a bay platform for services which ran from here to Bo'ness. Much of the
platform remains to the north of the embankment of the Edinburgh
and Glasgow Railway although the station platform
and bridge by which the Slamannan Railway passed under the main line have been
removed and landscaped by the embankment.
Just to the north of
the station a spur from a west facing junction with the Edinburgh
and Glasgow Railway joined the line at a north facing
junction. There were also sidings here for a brickworks, in fact a brickworks
remains open to the west of the area. This spur has been re-opened, although
today it has a different arrangement; it is the link between the Bo'ness and
Kinneil Railway and the main line, trains from Bo'ness ran to a reversing spur
and loop by the main line, and then change direction to join the main line at
an east facing junction.
Bo'ness Low Junction
The original junction here faced Bo'ness and
the other end of the spur joining the Edinburgh
and Glasgow Railway faced Glasgow.
The junction between the Slamannan Railway's
extension to Bo'ness and the Edinburgh
and Glasgow Railway has been reinstalled. At present
trains from Bo'ness cannot run directly onto the main line but gain access by
mains of a reversing spur (see above).
Birkhill Clay Mine
This Clay Mine has been preserved, although
out of use as a commercial mine, as a visitor attraction. There was a signalbox
here called "Birkhill" which controlled the original siding here,
which closed before closure of the line.
Since the line was re-opened as a preserved
railway a station, called "Birkhill" has been opened here. It has
a single platform and run-around loop. The station building here was originally
at Wormit, before being used at the Glasgow Garden Festival as part of a railway
exhibit and then being installed here.
This was the site of a very large coalmine.
The mine here was called "Furnaceyard" before being extended considerably
by the NCB. The mine was connected by underground tunnels to mines in Fife by
a tunnel under the River Forth before the Forth Bridge was opened - a source
of pride for the miners. Coal dug in Fife and Kinneil was wound up here afterwards.
The line from Manuel was retained to serve this mine after closure to Bo'ness.
A bridge over the former route of the line remains here, although the current
route of the preserved line is further north. There was a signalbox here called
There is a station here today on the re-opened
line. It has a single platform and passing loop. The site of the mine has been
cleared and landscaped.
The original station here was in the west of
the town and continued eastwards to very many sidings for a large wet dock (the
sidings ran from an east facing junction with the line) and further to the east
to a coalmine. The original station, which featured a very long single platform
and signalbox called "Bo'ness", has been landscaped (part of the site
is now a carpark). Latterly passenger trains ran from here to either Manuel
Low Level or via a spur to Polmont on the Edinburgh
and Glasgow Railway.
A new station has been built in Bo'ness, by
the wet dock, as the terminus of the Bo'ness and Kinneil Railway. The line has
been extended from here to Manuel, re-laying track where British
Rail previously removed it from between Bo'ness and Manuel. The station
has a museum and large car-parks for visitors. The present signalbox here was
brought from Gartqueen South Junction.
Bo'ness was served by both the North
British Railway and Caledonian
Railway as the Caledonian was able to apply for running powers.
Page created on 14/11/1997
Page last edited on: 02/04/2012
Contact: Ewan Crawford