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Kilmarnock Railway Station

A Category B Listed Building in Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire

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Latitude: 55.6123 / 55°36'44"N

Longitude: -4.4991 / 4°29'56"W

OS Eastings: 242689

OS Northings: 638248

OS Grid: NS426382

Mapcode National: GBR 3G.MJ96

Mapcode Global: WH3Q9.V6RC

Entry Name: Kilmarnock Railway Station

Listing Date: 3 July 1980

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 380616

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB35928

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Kilmarnock

County: East Ayrshire

Town: Kilmarnock

Electoral Ward: Kilmarnock West and Crosshouse

Traditional County: Ayrshire

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1878; with later additions and canopies. 2-storeys, diminishing to single storey at east to accommodate sloping ground; 18-bay by 6-bay, L-plan railway station with 3-storey, single bay, Italianate tower at SE corner. Coursed red ashlar sandstone, rusticated at ground, droved to 1st with polished dressings. Cill band to 1st floor, architraved rectangular windows. Cornice and blocking course raised over central bays with block pediment.

S (PRINICPAL) ELEVATION: 18-bay elevation on slope, divided 5-8-5. To left, 2-storey, regularly fenestrated 5-bays. Slightly advanced 2-storey, 8-bay central portion with raised block pediment. To right, 4 single storey bays. Plain parapet concealing roof line. Taller 5th bay with arched window and prominent keystone forming base of 3-storey tower; band course at springing-line. To 2nd storey: arched bipartite window with impost blocks and circular light above. Band course clasping full height angle margins. Large, circular light in upper stage; bracketed pediment surmounting. Upper stages identical to each elevation.

W ELEVATION: blind, lean-to end of principal offices to right divided by high wall from platform elevation. On right of platform, 2 cast-iron arches with decorative spandrels resting on stone wall, radial glazing to upper sections of arches; terminating in decorative cast-iron support pillar to left; large roof truss spanning all and extending across railway line to rest on matching pillar on next platform.

N (PLATFORM) ELEVATION: 21 painted cast-iron pillars supporting projecting cast-iron and glass verandah style roof over platforms. Each pillar: T-shaped with circular plinth and bowed section leading to partially ringed shaft; paired arched roof brackets flanking riveted upper section, each with circular GSWR monogram and scrolled foliate spandrels. 4 pillars to left bays hold roof beams adjoining high platform wall by means of semi-arched matching brackets; open section between 4th and 5th bracket. Bays between brackets 5 to 7 form right return of E elevation: door and window to left bay, window to right bay; to right return door and window of former booking office. In front, double flight of stairs leading from subway with pair of cast-iron newel piers with pyramid caps and ball finials. Long elevation, extending length of platform, regularly fenestrated with windows and doors leading into former refreshment and waiting rooms. Row of 13 plain cast-iron pillars holding riveted roof trusses, parallel to length of elevation.

E ELEVATION: return of tower to left: arched window with prominent keystone; band course at springing-line (see S ELEVATION for upper stages). Single storey, 6-bays to right: windows with margins and drip sills, paired doors to 2nd and 3rd bays; blind wall adjoining at 90 degree angle at extreme right.

Mostly 8-pane, double-glazed sash and case windows. Fixed multi-paned radial arched windows to W end of platforms. Piended grey slate roof to main station building and tower. Glazed panels to piended roof over platforms, cast-iron columns, braces and rivets.

INTERIOR: modern underpass leading to platforms; stone steps with wrought-iron pillars and ball finials at platform exit; screen to original ticket office remains with bracketed ledge and plaster cornice. Some skirting boards, plaster cornicing and panelled timber doors remain to former waiting / refreshment rooms on platform.

Statement of Interest

This "new" station was built as an addition to the 1850 3-storey, 3-bay station by Hugh Maclure that, until recently, stood to the SW of the main building. The railway first came to Kilmarnock in 1837 when the Kilmarnock & Ayr Railway Company was formed, followed by the Glasgow & Dalry Railway Company, six years later. The numbers of goods and passengers carried rose quickly, as its popularity continued on from that of the Duke of Portland's wagon way. In 1847, the Kilmarnock & Troon wagon-way was bought from the Duke and converted for the use of passenger steam trains. Within the next 3 years, more lines were opened up with stops at Galston and Newmilns. A magnificent railway viaduct was constructed from the station, across Portland and Soulis Streets and spanning the Kilmarnock Water to join land at the bottom of what became Kay Park. It towered over the older, smaller properties. The turning point of the station came in 1850. This saw the completion of the Glasgow and South Western's Nithsdale line. The cross border track ran between Carlisle and Glasgow and stopped at Kilmarnock. The original station, which later became known as Kilmarnock Station Goods Department, was built as a formal entrance to the aggrandised tracks. Before the end of the century, Glasgow and South Western Railway Company had opened a workshop and locomotive building shop at nearby Bonnyton. This survived well into the 20th century before it was taken over as the London, Midlands and Scottish Railway Works in the 1930's. The works have now disappeared, replaced by the Bonnyton Industrial Estate. The older railway station was demolished in the last decade of the 20th century. The remaining station has undergone substantial refurbishment work, such as repairs to the iron canopy work, stone cleaning and replacement windows. The railway station, although situated on a hill, is linked to the major streets of the town by means of subways. The most ornate route is the John Finnie / West George / Garden Streets and Langlands Brae subway, which has a castellated entrance (listed separately).

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