Glenfinnan Railway Protection – Network Rail

Network Rail are currently undertaking important work to protect the railway from potential landslips and rock-falls from the hillsides and embankments around the iconic Glenfinnan viaduct. The work will protect 14 rock cuttings over a two and a half mile stretch of single-track railway between Locheilside and Lochailort encompassing both…

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ScotRail Franchise Termination

The Scottish Government announced in December 2019 that the current operator of Scotland’s Railway is to have its contract ceased by early 2022. The Friends of the West Highland Lines are committed to promotion and protection of the lines serving the West Highlands and are well aware and disappointed that…

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Renewing Scotland’s Railways

‘Renewing Britain’s Railways: Scotland’ is a new book released by Amberley Publishing as a retrospective of the Scottish network during the last few years. Written by FWHL Co-Webmaster Gordon Webster, it includes a comprehensive chapter about the West Highland and Oban lines. It includes 150 colour images in sharp, high…

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Severe Flooding Closes the West Highland Lines

This unusual view of a 156 DMU ‘parked in a Crianlarich siding is assumed to be a consequence of the severe flood damage to the line on 4th August 2019 when the area was the victim of severe thunderstorms. Parts of the track bed were washed away between Ardlui and…

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Class 153 Update

Published 26/11/2018. Recent information has been released by Transport Scotland outlining thoughts on how to ‘kit-out’ the proposed Class 153 single carriage units for the transport of Cycle, Ski and other outdoor sports equipment on Scotland’ scenic railway routes. The proposal is to add the 153 carriage to the current…

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Revamp of Queen Street Station

The picture on the left is a computer generated image, supplied by Network Rail, of how the interior of Queen Street Station will look in 2020 when the £120 million redevelopment is completed. Queen Street is Scotland’s 3rd busiest station and is being transformed to allow for platform extension to…

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Class 153 Single Car DMU.

Certain service trains on the West Highland Lines will have Class 153 single car units added to the existing 156 DMUs. The additional ‘baggage’ car will provide space for cyclists, their cycles, rucksacks, skis and sports equipment and, it is anticipated, extra seats to reduce overcrowding (a problem which will…

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Glen Orchy Bridge

Published, 09/10/2018; At the beginning of October the entire ‘floor’ of timbers on the Orchy Rail Viaduct, over the entrance to Loch Awe, has been replaced with new timbers.  While this work proceeded buses replaced rail services for nearly a week between Oban and Crianlarich. The bridge dates back from…

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Oban Station Track Layout

Published, 09/10/2018; Oban station and approach tracks have been completely relaid by Network Rail. The crossover at the platforms was also renewed and a membrane laid through the platforms before new track and ballast was installed.  A virtual ballast quarry was established at Glenshellach about 1/4-mile from the station. Because…

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Caledonian Sleeper – New Mk 5 Carriages

New carriages for the Caledonian Sleeper have appeared on the West Highland Line for the first time, on daytime trial runs. Photographers got a glimpse of the eagerly-awaited Mk 5 coaches during several weekdays in April, when a Class 73 locomotive worked from Glasgow to Arrochar and back. 10 April…

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