John Speller's Web Pages Kilmarnock

John Speller's Web Pages - G&SWR
The first rail service to Kilmarnock came with the opening of the Kilmarnock & Troon Railway on 6 July 1812. Rail service to Glasgow and Ayr came about with the opening of the Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway on 4 April 1843. The present station dates from 20 July 1846. It became a joint station with the opening of the Glasgow, Paisley, Kilmarnock and Ayr Railway (Caledonian and Glasgow & South Western Railways Joint Committee) on 27 March 1871.

Kilmarnock was also the location of the Glasgow & South Western Railway's locomotive works. The first Locomotive Superintendent, Patrick Robertson, had charge of the a small works on a cramped site in Cook Street, Glasgow. After his appointment as Locomotive Superintendent in 1853, it was immediately apparent to Robertson's successor, Patrick Stirling, that something much larger was needed. At the meeting of shareholders in September, 1854, the Directors recommended the removal of the Company's workshops from Glasgow to Kilmarnock, at a probable expenditure of £45,000. Work proceeded rapidly, and by 1856 the Kilmarnock Works was partly open, and by August 1858 it was complete. There was a grand administrative building with a clock tower, the usual locomotive carriage and wagon shops, and a model village for the workers at Bonnyton Square. 425 steam locomotives were built at Kilmarnock Works between 1857 and 1921. By the eve of the First World War, however, the Works had become run down and outmoded. In 1921 the Locomotive Superintendent, R. H. Whitelegg, made the decision to cease locomotive production there. After the Grouping of 1923 heavy repairs were moved to the St. Rollox Works of the former Caledonian Railway. After this only light repairs were carried out in the Kilmarnock shops, and most of the buildings were demolished in 1929.
Kilmarnock's fine railway station of 1846, happily preserved on 28 July 2008. Image courtesy of Wikipedia Commons. There used to be a second clock tower on the office building of the Kilmarnock Works until its demolition in 1929
One of Patrick Stirling's "Class 2" 2-2-2 locomotives, among the first to be built at Kilmarnock Works in 1857 and shown here at Dumfries
A local train at Kilmarnock station behind ex-Midland Railway "2-P" Class 4-4-0 No. 40688 on 17 July 1957. Image courtesy of Wikipedia Commons
Artisan dwellings for the staff of the G&SWR's Locomotive Works at Bonnyton Square, Kilmarnock
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