Kyle of Lochalsh line

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Kyle of Lochalsh Line
SeestemNational Rail
Kyle of Lochalsh
AwnerNetwork Rail
Operator(s)Abellio ScotRail
Rowin stockClass 158
Line lenthDingwall to Kyle of Lochalsh: 63 mile 64 chain (102.7 km)
Track gaugeStandard gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in)

The Kyle of Lochalsh Line is a primarily single track railwey line in the Scots Hielands, frae Dingwal tae Kyle o Lochalsh. Mony o the passengers are tourists, but thare are an aw locals veesitin Innerness for shopping, an commuters. Aw services are providit bi Abellio ScotRail and run beyond Dingwal tae Innerness. Most services run tae or frae Innerness; ane daily train continues beyond Innerness tae Elgin (in the 2016 timetable). In the past thare war some throu services tae/frae Glesga, Edinburgh or Aiberdeen.[1] Nane o the line is electrified, an aw trains on the line are diesel-powered, as are aw ither trains in the Scots Hielands.

History[eedit | eedit soorce]

Construction[eedit | eedit soorce]

The route wis biggit in three sections:

  • Inverness and Ross-shire Railway atween Inverness and Dingwall, openin on 1 October 1864.
  • Dingwall and Skye Railway atween Dingwall and Stromeferry, openin on 19 August 1870.
  • Kyle of Lochalsh Extension (Highland Railway) atween Stromeferry and Kyle of Lochalsh, openin on 2 November 1897.

Strathpeffer Branch[eedit | eedit soorce]

The Strathpeffer Branch operated atween 1885 and 1951.[2]

Named trains[eedit | eedit soorce]

In 1933, the London, Midland and Scottish Railway introduced twa named trains on the line, The Hebridean and The Lewisman.

Lochluichart station[eedit | eedit soorce]

In 1949 it wis planned tae relocate Lochluichart station tae allou the flooding o the area bi the Glascarnoch-Luichart-Torr Achilty hydroelectric scheme. On 3 May 1954 a new station wis opened as Lochluichart. The deviation required aboot 2 mile (3.2 km) on stone-pitched embankments an in rock cuttings, a 100 feet (30 m) brig ower the River Conon and a 36 feet (11 m) brig.

Closure proposals[eedit | eedit soorce]

In the 1960s the line wis listed tae be closed unner the Reshaping of British Railways report; houiver it wis reprieved and services continued.

In 1970, British Rail wanted tae close the line when Ross and Cromarty council voted tae creaut a new £460,000 (equivalent to £6,400,000 in 2018)[3] ferry terminal at Ullapool (43 mile frae Stornoway) replacing that at Kyle of Lochalsh (71 mile frae Stornoway). In December 1971 it wis reportit that the costs of operating the line war £318,000 per annum (equivalent to £4,050,000 in 2018),[3] wi revenue of £51,000 per annum (equivalent to £650,000 in 2018),[3] an the Secretary of State for Transport agreed that the line should close, but a spirited local campaign again succeeded in reversing this decision and keepin it open.

Natural disasters[eedit | eedit soorce]

In Julie 1939 a landslide atween Attadale and Stomeferry derailed an ingine and sax freight vans. The landslide wis caused bi hivy rains.

In 1989 the brig ower the River Ness at Innerness wis washed away, leaving baith the Kyle line an the Far North Line stranded, but new "Sprinter" trains war brocht ower bi road, an a temporary yard wis biggit tae service them at Muir o Ord. The section of line alang Loch Carron is parteecularly troublesome and prone tae landslides, eften closin that section.

References[eedit | eedit soorce]

  1. GB National Rail Timetable 2013-14, Tables 239 & 240 (Network Rail)
  2. H A Vallance, C R Clinker, Anthony J Lambert, The Highland Railway, David and Charles, Newton Abbot, 1985, ISBN 0 946537 24 0
  3. a b c UK Consumer Price Index inflation feegurs are based on data frae Gregory Clark (2016), "The Annual RPI and Average Earnings for Britain, 1209 to Present (New Series)",