High Blantyre Railway Viaduct

viaduct1963This photo is dated 1963. Pictured from Greenhall, looking Eastwards, is the line of tall Railway Viaduct pillars at High Blantyre. You can see the Blantyre Old Parish Church in the background. The Railway pillars allowed the Busby and East Kilbride train lines to connect to Blantyre and onwards either to Glasgow or Hamilton. The Calder valley was a difficult obstacle to overcome and an elevated railway over such a long distance was a difficult decision to take. Notification was put into the papers in 1864 asking for the planning permissions, acquisition of lands and to source contractors. It proved to be expensive and time consuming to construct, but by 1885, nineteen years later, the 13th line on the Caledonian Railway opened for industrial and passenger business with trains arriving into High Blantyre station. Today the pillars tower over the modern Salveson Housing Estate.  I’m looking into the construction of the pillars, the sourcing of stone and opening, in another article. Do you have memories of the Sandstone pillars?

Photo: John Robin.


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  1. Caroline – Was it like an iron box section with a wooden walkway below and the train line above it? This would have been similar to Craighead viaduct. The structure on top of those pillars would have been substantial to carry such heavy trains.

  2. My Dad remember’s the wooden walk way just under the line that folk would walk up/ down (those too poor to been to afford the train)

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