Scotland Street Tunnel

Location type


Name and dates

Scotland Street Tunnel (1847-1868)

Opened on the Edinburgh, Leith and Granton Railway.


This is a disused railway tunnel running opened between Scotland Street (to the north) and Edinburgh Canal Street (to the south).

The tunnel is 1,052 yds long and carried a double track line under the New Town streets (from north to south)

- Scotland Street
- Drummond Place
- Dublin Street
- Duke Street
- North and South St Andrew Street
- Princes Street

The tunnel was on a gradient of 1 in 27 requiring a continuous rope for haulage from Scotland Street to a stationary engine at Canal Street station.

With the opening of the Easter Road Deviation (North British Railway) the tunnel closed. Scotland Street remained open as a goods yard on a short branch and the site of Canal Street was able to be absorbed by expansion of Edinburgh Waverley. Waverley Market on the site was redeveloped as Waverley Centre. An access point to the tunnel was behind a grill fence in the station.

The tunnel was used until around 1890 for redundant wagons.

The Scottish Mushroom Company operated from the tunnel afterwards, one track being retained the other used for growing. The company was very successful, after its formation mushrooms were barely imported to Britain. There were 800 mushroom beds in the tunnel, each bed 12 ft by 3 ft. Manure came in by rail and mushrooms out. The company's offices were at Scotland Street. The company also used the Law Tunnel in Dundee. The company became bankrupt in 1929 following a parasitical infection.

The tunnel was a railway bunker in the Second World War.

The tunnel still exists. The northern portal at Scotland Street can be seen today.