Merry Christmas from the Rudland family

Railway at Dalbeattie

I have done a bit of research and the following is the result.
The information here came from the Summer 1909 issue of “The Gallovidian” magazine.

The first survey for a possible rail link from Dumfries to Castle Douglas was carried out in 1853. Two years later it was decided to try to raise the necessary money and the Parliamentary Bill to construct the line received Royal assent in July 1856. The engineer appointed was Mr Andrew Galloway, C.E. and the capital raised was £187,785 (half subscribed by Glasgow and South-Western Railway Co.) The length of the line was 19 miles and the contractors for the formation of the line were Messrs Henry Lee, Son & Freeman, London; and Messrs Lawton Bros, Newcastle-on-Tyne.

The Castle Douglas and Dumfries Railway Co was formed in March, 1857 with the following directors WH Maxwell of Munches (Chairman), JB Neilson of Queenshill,
W Gordon of Culvennan, J Cowan of Dildawn, P Dudgeon of Cargen, F Maxwell of Breoch.
Mr Gordon of Castlehill and Mr R Hewat of Castle Douglas were auditors and Mr WH Lidderdale of Castle Douglas being Secretary.

The following comments come from a manuscript diary kept by Mr W Carswell, mill owner, of Dalbeattie:

1859
8 March, I hear that Nash & Ritchie has got the contract for building the Railway Station at Dalbeattie
13 Up at Barclosh railway bridge - getting but slowly on.
10 April I was over at the station in the afternoon - they are commenced to build.
8 May They are getting on well with the Station and Barclosh Bridge.
26 June I was as far as the Logan cut this afternoon. They are nearly through with it. The bridge across the Urr is got through the bed of the river.Two months will put it all forward
10 July I was up at the railway bridge at Barclosh. The bank through the Edingham Moss is going down as fast as they are putting it on. The Urr bridge is getting on fast now.
18 Sept At railway bank at Edingham. There are about 50 men working today (Sunday). Getting rails laid and ballast on. An engine is to come on Friday first.
23 There came from Dumfries a locomotive and three carriages with a lot of directors to attend a meeting in Castle Douglas.
18 Oct There was a great dinner party in Dalbeattie last night - somewhere between 70 and 80 sat at dinner in Mrs Muir’s room (the Commercial Hotel) at 7s6d each. The directors were received at the railway station and welcomed by a large concourse of people. They formed a procession headed by the band of the Dumfriesshire Militia and, followed by a van on which was mounted a small cannon. A great deal of fireworks were let off at night. It will be a long-remembered day in Dalbeattie.
4 Nov There was a luggage train down today with goods for Castle Douglas
5 A passenger train down this afternoon. It will be stopping in Castle Douglas till Monday.
7 The Railway has made a fair start today - three passenger trains each way every day and two luggage trains. The fares to Dumfries from Castle Douglas are: 3rd - 1s2d;
2nd - 1s10d; and First Class, 2s5d
10 The passenger train was late of arriving last night owing to the luggage train engine getting off the rails at Woodhead. I sold a truck of lime to John Martin, joiner, at 1s2d per bushel to be delivered at Castle Douglas. It will be the first that will go that way.

When you think of it, the construction took less time than the dismantling in the 1960s

The year of 1859 was memorable in another way, in that the Dalbeattie Gas Light Co was formed and the gasworks at Millisle was constructed and opened for business.

One Response to “Railway at Dalbeattie”

  1. Dad Says:

    On 5 July 1865 the company was amalgamated with the Glasgow & South-Western Railway Company who had, up till then, owned a half share.
    Up until 1876 the railway was only double as far as Lochanhead. A petition was presented to the Directors for the line to be doubled as far as Southwick, this work occupying till March 1878. Two years later the double set of rails was extended to Castle Douglas, with a new viaduct over the Urr. This was erected my Mr JBA M’Kinnel of Dumfries foundry.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.