HMNB Clyde

Location type

Names and dates

Faslane Military Port (1942-1945)
HMNB Clyde (1964-)


This was an emergency port built during the Second World War. The port was intended to provide extra wharfage should London and Liverpool docks be destroyed.

To prepare the site a considerable amount of material was deposited in Faslane Bay to reclaim land for a marshalling yard, station, loading ramps and transit sheds. A long offshore quayside was built running south from the marshalling yards.

Approach to the site was from Faslane Junction (and Faslane Junction Yard), a long double track railway operated wrong line dropped down to a station and headshunts in the north of the site. The yards, ramps, sheds and quayside were reached by reversal. Quayside lines reached as far south as opposite Balernock House and onshore lines reached as far south as Carnban Point.

Elsewhere a re-opened and extended yard opened at Rhu, the loop at Helensburgh Upper was extended, and further yards laid out at Craigendoran Junction and Ardmore Yard (where an anti-submarine boom for the River Clyde was stored).

After the war, the northern part of the site was used to scrap surplus naval vessels by Metal Industries (Salvage) Ltd (later Shipbreaking Industries Ltd). Lines remained in use, the railway up to Faslane Junction was singled. The southern part of the site, which came to be in Naval use, had all of its sidings lifted and the long quayside was breached to separate the two portions of the port.

The whole site is now a submarine base.

HM Naval Base Clyde

A similar port was developed at Cairnryan served by the Cairnryan Military Railway.


Military Port


Shipbreaking Industries

Chronology Dates

27/04/1941West Highland Railway
Military Port Number 1 Railway
Faslane Junction junction and signal box opened with a loop on the main line, double track junction and exchange sidings for the railway to Military Port No 1, Faslane Military Port.
21/12/1941West Highland Railway
New signal box and longer loop opened at Helensburgh Upper to help with Faslane Military Port traffic.
10/12/1949PS Lucy Ashton
Sold to Metal Industries (Salvage) Ltd, Faslane Military Port. Deck structures removed. Hull used for resistance testing by the British Shipbuilding Research Association and fitted with jet propulsion. (The wheelhouse found its way to the garden of Graham Langmuir, noted steamer historian.)