Ayr: A double set 380 (too long for the bays?) for Glasgow whines quietly at Platform 4 while on 3 the 156 for Girvan, engine off, awaits its driver. Photographed 01/10/2016
David Panton 01/10/2016


Location type


Name and dates

Ayr (1886-)

Station code: AYR National Rail ScotRail
Where: South Ayrshire, Scotland
Opened on the Ayr and Dalmellington Railway.
Open on the Glasgow to Ayr and Stranraer.


This station has four platforms - two through platforms on the route to Stranraer and two bays for traffic to the north.

Ayr station, originally the two platform Ayr [2nd] on the Ayr and Dalmellington Railway, underwent a huge reconstruction involving the change of the road layout in the area. The main part of the station was south of the original following reconstruction and Kyle Street, where it crossed the railway, was entirely removed to allow the new construction.

The architect for the reconstruction of the station and hotel was the Glasgow and South Western Railway's engineer Andrew Galloway. Work began in 1885.

The station has a glazed roof, cut back in recent years, and station hotel of 1866. The Ayr Station Hotel, in red sandstone, partly closed in 2010, completely in 2012, and is in increasingly poor condition (2018).

On the west side of the station, at the north end, was a series of carriage sidings and an additional bay platform, both now the site of a car park and housing.

At the south end, south of Station Bridge, the line quadrupled and there were two additional platforms on either side.

South of the station, on the west side and approached from the south, was a goods yard. This is now Townhead EMU Sidings.

Ayr station had two signal boxes. No 1 was at the north end at the station's throat by the bridge over the River Ayr, located on the east side. No 2 was at the south end, on the west side between the sidings and main running lines. Both boxes closed in 1985.

From 1985-86 there was a temporary box here during the preparations for the Ayr line's electrification. In addition to the No 1 and No 2 boxes this also took over Belmont Level Crossing, Falkland Junction, Newton Junction [Ayr], Prestwick. The temporary box was taken over by the Paisley Signalling Centre in 1986.


The Ayr Station Hotel was railway owned until 1951. This towers over Ayr station and a good view of the station was had from the bedrooms. The hotel closed suddenly in 2012 and is decaying. Protective screens have been erected over portions of the station to protect it from falling debris.



External links

Canmore site record
NLS Collection OS map of 1892-1914
NLS Collection OS map of 1944-67


Gaelic name: Inbhir Air
Bike rack
Pay car park
Taxi rank
Ticket machine
Bus link: Bus to Cairnryan Port.
Ferry link: Via bus to Cairnryan Port for Belfast by ferry.

Chronology Dates

  /  /1840Ayr and Dalmellington Railway
Originally promoted as the Ayrshire and Galloway Railway it was to run from Ayr to Dalmellington and on to Castle Douglas to join the British and Irish Grand Junction Railway, which later was opened as the Portpatrick Railway.
  /  /1865Muirkirk Branch (Caledonian Railway)
Line authorised, extending the Douglas Branch (Caledonian Railway) west. A Bill for a branch to Glespin is abandoned. Caledonian Railway given running powers from Muirkirk [1st] to Ayr and Troon, in return the Glasgow and South Western Railway is given running powers to Edinburgh, Leith and Granton.
01/07/1885Paisley Canal Line (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Opened from Port Eglinton Junction to Elderslie Junction. The line uses much of the former route of the Glasgow, Paisley and Ardrossan Canal, the line runs skew across a former aqueduct bridge at Paisley Hawkhead. The canal route under the main line at Elderslie was used for a link to the Bridge of Weir Railway so that Greenock Princes Pier [1st] bound trains did not have to cross the track used by Ayr to Glasgow trains. The former Port Eglinton Basin becomes the Port Eglinton Goods depot.
  /  /1896Strathaven and Darvel Railway Mid Lanark Lines (Caledonian Railway) Mid Lanark, Spireslack and Muirkirk Branch (Caledonian Railway)
Lanarkshire and Ayrshire Lines authorised for the Caledonian Railway; Darvel to Strathaven Central, Spireslack Colliery No 1 Pit to Muirkirk (Auldhouseburn Junction), Stonehouse [Lanarkshire] and Stonehouse [Lanarkshire] to Lesmahagow [2nd] and Alton Heights Junction. The Glasgow and South Western Railway is granted running powers over these lines in exchange for the Caledonian Railway having running powers from Darvel to Troon and Kilmarnock to Ayr.
01/12/1930Maidens and Dunure Railway (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Turnberry to Ayr (Alloway Junction) closed to passengers.
03/07/1950Muirkirk Branch (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Ayr and Cumnock Line (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Cronberry to Auchinleck closed to passengers (route from Muirkirk [2nd] via Ochiltree and Annbank to Ayr remains open to passengers).
  /  /1951Ayr and Mauchline Line (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Ayr and Cumnock Line (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Muirkirk Branch (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Ayr (excluded) to Muirkirk [2nd] (excluded) closed. Auchincruive, Annbank, Trabboch, Drongan, Ochiltree, Skares, Dumfries House, Cumnock, and Cronberry closed.
10/09/1951Ayr and Mauchline Line (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Muirkirk [2nd] to Ayr (Hawkhill Junction) closed to passengers.
07/12/1959Maidens and Dunure Railway (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Heads of Ayr [2nd] (Butlins Camp) to Ayr (Alloway Junction) closed to freight.
23/06/1962RCTS Railtour
Excursion train hauled by Caledonian Railway 123 and Great North of Scotland Railway 49 from Ayr to Stranraer.
06/04/1964Ayr and Dalmellington Railway
Dalmellington to Ayr (Dalrymple Junction) closed to passengers.
14/06/1965Ayr and Mauchline Line (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Girvan and Portpatrick Junction Railway
Maybole and Girvan Railway
Annbank (Annbank Junction) to Mauchline re-opened to passengers (with the closure of the Port Road the trains are diverted). The number of trains between Challoch Junction, Girvan and Ayr increases after closure of the Portpatrick Railway.
16/09/1968Maidens and Dunure Railway (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Heads of Ayr [2nd] (Butlins Camp) to Ayr (Alloway Junction) closed to passengers.
05/05/1975Ayr and Mauchline Line (Glasgow and South Western Railway)
Ayr (Hawkhill Junction) to Mauchline re-closed to passengers. Blackhouse Junction to Hawkhill Junction closed to all traffic.
29/09/1986Glasgow, Paisley Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway
Electrification and re-signaling of Paisley to Ayr complete.
  /09/2002Ayr and Dalmellington Railway
Bus interchanged planned for Ayr station.
04/07/2011Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway
Class 318s withdrawn from Glasgow Central - Ayr service.

News items

03/01/2024Limited Ayrshire train services during January - here's why [Ayr Advertiser]
24/12/2023Shuttle trains between Ayr and Prestwick to resume [Ayr Advertiser]
20/12/2023Ayr station: 'Unsafe conditions' spark fresh closure [The Herald]
19/12/2023Ayr station closed due to unsafe conditions months after hotel fire [STV]
01/12/2023Ayr Station Hotel: Station Bridge Road footpath to open [Ayr Advertiser]
30/11/2023Limited rail services to resume from Ayr station after hotel fire [BBC News]
28/11/2023Ayr Station Hotel: Letter outlines concerns on demolition [Ayr Advertiser]
27/11/2023Inside the life of Sunny Ung: The absentee owner of Ayr Station Hotel [Ayr Advertiser]
23/11/2023Ayr railway station gets extension green light [Daily Record]
21/11/2023Ayr Station Hotel: Scottish Parliament roundtable meeting [Ayr Advertiser]


A Look Back at Dalmellington

An Archaeological Field Survey at Chalmerston, Dalmellington (Occasional paper / Association of Certified Field Archaeologists)

Dalmellington (Pathfinder Maps)

Dalmellington Iron Company: Its Engines and Men
Dalmellington Iron Company: Its Engines and Men
Doon Valley Memories: Dalmellington Dunaskin Patna and District - A Pictorial Reflection

Old Dalmellington, Patna and Waterside