Branch Line Britain - celebrating Britain's minor railways

Scottish - Helensburgh review 1

24/8/08 Cardross to Helensburgh Central

Details from SPRS "Routes & Branches" Excursion  

Journey time: 8 minutes  (single track from Craigendoran)

Distance: 4 miles   Weather: cloudy

Train type: Class 320 4-car EMU 

Railway company: Strathclyde Partnership for Transport

Frequency of trains: every half hour

After passing through Dalreoch (where the branch to Balloch goes), we enter a tunnel and then come out with the river Clyde on our left. We then pass a water treatment works on the left. We are now quite close to riverbank with views across to Greenock. There is plenty of evidence of market gardening on the right. We then pass through Cardross station. It has a bus stop shelters on the both platforms, with the original red brick building on up platform. It also has a cast iron bridge painted in red and cream. We move inland a bit now with open fields on both sides. The line curves to the right and you can see Rosneath Point on the left in the distance. Sheep are grazing in some fields, cattle in others. On the right you can see the mountains on the left bank of Loch Lommond. Just before Craigendoran station the line to Oban and Fort William leaves us as a single track on the right. Craigendoran station just has bus stops and is right by the side of the river Clyde. Then we move into a leafy cutting on a single track and slow down as the houses of Helensburgh appear on both sides. You can still see glimpses of the Clyde down the streets. Just before the station the track doubles and then we come into the station, which has three platforms and a large glass canopy. It's quite a large station and still looks impressive for a terminus station.

Summary: Still a busy line for both commuters and tourists. MC