Heads of Ayr [2nd]

Location type


Name and dates

Heads of Ayr [2nd] (1947-1968)

Note: text in square brackets is added for clarity and was not part of the location's name.

Opened on the Maidens and Dunure Light Railway (Glasgow and South Western Railway).


This station was opened in 1947 to serve Butlin's Ayr holiday camp. It was to the east of the original Heads of Ayr [1st] station which had closed in 1930.

The camp was built as HMS Scotia but to the specifications of Billy Butlin who was offered the opportunity to buy the camp from the Admiralty following the Second Wolrd War. Butlin had chosen the location looking out over the Lower Firth of Clyde to the island of Arran. HMS Scotia was a signals training establishment. After the war the site was refitted to be a holiday destination in preparation for the 1947 season.

The station consisted of a single long platform, on the north side of the line, and loop, capable of handling 14 coach trains. The platform line was the original railway with the loop laid to its south. There was no goods provision, Heads of Ayr [1st] remained open as a goods station. The rather austere flat roofed station building contained the signal box. The holiday camp was to the north, the station being on higher ground overlooking the site.

Due to heavier trains running to the new station the line was relaid in heavier rail from Alloway Junction to Heads of Ayr.

The camp included its own a miniature railway. With the impending withdrawl of steam famous locomotives were taken for display at the camp, making the latter part of the journey from Greenan Goods to the camp by road.

The line west and south closed beyond the station in 1955.

The station and line closed in 1968.

The site remains, overgrown. The camp also remains, although ownership has changed and the site has been rebuilt.

The Heads of Ayr is a headland to the north west of the holiday site.


Haven - Craig Tara


Station terminus


A Regional History of the Railways of Great Britain: Scotland - The Lowlands and the Borders v. 6 (Regional railway history series)

Locomotive Apprentice: At the North British Locomotive Company

Rails to Turnberry and Heads of Ayr: The Maidens & Dunure Light Railway & the Butlin's Branch (Oakwood Library of Railway History)

Tales of the Glasgow and South Western Railway