Railways

Subway Depot

Glasgow’s Subway is the third-oldest subway system in the world, after London and Budapest, opened in 1896; two tracks run in a 6.5 mile loop with 15 stations north and south of the Clyde, and with a surface maintenance depot which the trains reach via a gradient.

The initial system was cable-driven – cables ran in a continuous loop driven by a surface steam engine, and the trains could clamp onto or release this cable. Later, the cars were converted to electric power – one of the old cars remains at the depot:

In 1977, the system was closed for a complete renovation – many stations were widened or even rebuilt entirely, the track was replaced, and entirely new rolling stock was ordered. Amusingly, because the old stations only had a centre platform, passengers only ever saw one side of the trains, so only one side was nicely painted!

Next to the old car is a cute little shunter:

The rest of this shed holds the modern rolling stock:

In a smaller shed, maintenance wagons are stored – these wagons are made from the chassis’ of the old pre-modernisation cars:

The largest shed holds the workshops:

A series of pits allow access under the trains:

There’s also a special tug which can drive on both rail and road:

Bridgeton Tunnels

Two disused railway lines terminate at Bridgeton Cross in Glasgow’s East End. In 1892, the North British Railway built a new branch line from their Queen Street station to new stations at Gallowgate Central and Bridgeton Central. A year later, the Glasgow & South Western Railway built a short line to join this branch to their St. Enoch terminus. This line was closed in 1979 – it’s made up of several short tunnels and cuttings.

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Botanic Gardens Station

The platforms of the old Botanic Gardens Station in Glasgow are a local Urbex tradition – originally the station had a beautiful above-ground ticket office, but this was destroyed by fire, and now all that remains is the tunnel itself and the platforms.

Going into the tunnel, there’s some fun graffiti – not so funny when you’re on your own in the dark, though.

Wolves... (by Ben Cooper)

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