Portessie [GNSR]

Location type


Name and dates

Portessie [GNSR] (1886-1968)

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

Opened on the Moray Coast Railway (Great North of Scotland Railway).


This was a three platform station which was built at the expense of the Great North of Scotland Railway. Two platforms, owned by the GNoSR were at the east end of a loop which ran west to Buckie [GNSR].

The westbound platform was an island shared with the Highland Railway which ran west and south to climb to Buckie [HR] and the route to Keith. There was a loop by the platform which reduced to a single track going westwards.

At the east end of the station was Findochty Junction where the two lines met and there were exchange sidings on the south side of the line. Via these the Highland was able to run to Cluny Harbour (or rather the GNSR station goods yard). The line, owned by the Great North of Scotland Railway, continued east to Cullen.

At the east end, on the north side of the line, was the goods yard. This was served from the east.

Also at the east end, and to the south of both companies' lines was the Highland's turntable, water tank and locomotive shed, both served from the west. Portessie Shed.

The main station building was on the GNoSR's eastbound platform. There was a small waiting room on the island platform and a footbridge at the west end.

The Highland's line opened first to a temporary platform, in 1884, and the GNoSR followed in 1886. (The GNoSR may have opened the Portessie to Buckie [GNSR] portion to goods before the rest of their line to allow the Highland to serve the Cluny Harbour - source uncertain). For a short time the Highland had all the Buckie traffic. But this was a branch line and it was soon eclipsed by the Moray Coast through line.

A box opened at the east end of Portessie in 1886. This was on the north side opposite the junction with the Highland.

The Highland's line closed as a through route in 1915. Track was lifted for the war effort. It was relaid as far as Buckie [HR] station by the GNoSR in 1919. That closed in 1933 (when the Highland's Portessie box closed, replaced by hand points) but the line remained in place until 1948. The final part of the line to survive ran to the turntable, which was finally removed in 1953.

The station, box and line closed in 1968.

The site remains, without buildings, and much overgrown. The turntable pit can be found as can the platforms and base of the water tank. A Highland Railway cottage remains at the east end of the site, in use as a house.

The station was to the east and south of Portessie, on the coast. When opened, the station and sidings were around the same size as Portessie itself.


The trackbed is now the National Cycle Route 1 .



External links

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


Banff, Moray and Nairn's Lost Railways
Moray Coast Railways
The Travellers Joy: The Story of the Morayshire Railway