Leith Central

Location type


Name and dates

Leith Central (1903-1952)

Opened on the Leith Central Branch (North British Railway).


Leith Central was a large four platform terminus with a glazed roof fronting Leith Walk, at the foot of the Walk.

The trainshed was 830 ft long with a width of 100 ft at the east end and a maximum width of 220 ft bridging the entire site. This very large trainshed dominated the area. The end screen at the east end was a very high glazed screen. The engineers were Blyth and Westland. The trainshed took up most of two blocks, Glover Street passing underneath.

The frontage onto Leith Walk is renaissance in style with a clock tower above the curving frontage on the junction between Leith Walk and Duke Street. The main frontage is two storey but the eastern portion on Duke Street is four storey taking it up to the height of the trainshed. Crown Place, on the south side of the frontage, was the station's carriage entrance.

The station served as a terminus for Leith, but also relieved the pressure on Edinburgh Waverley as a location for trains to terminate.

The station was approached from the east and south. On the approach lines a junction at London Road Junction [Edinburgh] gave access to Edinburgh Waverley and at Lochend South Junction the line ran east towards Portobello [3rd].

The station closed in 1952. After a short period as a carriage shed it was redeveloped as Leith Central Diesel Depot. The signal box closed in 1966. The line closed altogether in 1972.

The building remained derelict for many years before the trainshed was felled in 1989.

The frontage on Leith Walk remains intact. The area of the trainshed is occupied by shops and a car park. Long side walls from the train shed can still be found, their height considerably reduced. This was perhaps an opportunity missed to reuse a superb building.

The approach from the east required the North British Railway to buy and demolish property on Easter Road. The gap has been filled with a new building, five storeys fitting where there were previously four.


Terminus Station

External links

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

Chronology Dates

07/04/1952Leith Central Branch (North British Railway)
Leith Central to Abbeyhill and Piershill closed to passengers.
01/05/1972Leith Central Branch (North British Railway)
Leith Central (DMU servicing) to Abbeyhill Junction and Piershill Junction closed.

News items

11/11/2021Looking back at Edinburgh's lost railway stations with one set to be restored soon [Edinburgh Live]