The Birth of the Railways in Glasgow, Scotland

The story of the early railway lines in and around Glasgow, Scotland

Last updated 5/2023 English

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Glasgow began to develop as a port and industrial centre from the late eighteenth century. The Forth and Clyde Canal was built from the River Forth near Edinburgh through to Glasgow and brought some coal to the growing industries in the area - but not enough. The Monkland Canal gave direct access to the coalfields around Coatbridge but businesses in Glasgow soon became dissatisfied with the monopoly they held over the supply of coal. The Monklands and Kirkintilloch Railway was built to transport coal from the Monklands coalfields to the Forth and Clyde Canal and thence to Glasgow. Shortly afterwards the Garnkirk and Glasgow Railway brought the coal directly into Glasgow. These lines would introduce the earliest steam locomotives in Scotland.

Later the area of Glasgow known as St Rollox, would become one of the most important manufacturing centres for steam locomotives and carriages. That story is told here too.

Finally, as a bonus, I tell the story of the Ballachulish Railway in the Highlands of Scotland. A very scenic railway with an interesting history.

Who this course is for

  1. Railway enthusiasts
  2. History buffs
  3. People interested in the industrial revolution


Loved to learn about the history of railways in Glasgow --- I've never been there, have no connections to Scotland, but love history. Thanks for putting this informative videos together !!! ~ Karim S

What you'll learn

  1. The history of the early railways in and around Glasgow in Scotland
  2. The history of the Monkland Canal
  3. The Story of the Monklands and Kirkintilloch Railway
  4. The Story of the Garnkirk and Glasgow Railway
  5. The Story of the four major engine and carriage works in Springburn in Glasgow
  6. The Story of the Ballachulish railway in the Highlands of Scotland


There are no pre-course requirements.

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