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North Queensferry, Railway Pier Including Associated Goods Yard Pier and Disembarkation Pier

A Category B Listed Building in Inverkeithing, Fife

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Latitude: 56.0072 / 56°0'26"N

Longitude: -3.3994 / 3°23'57"W

OS Eastings: 312840

OS Northings: 680249

OS Grid: NT128802

Mapcode National: GBR 20.TJ8H

Mapcode Global: WH6S9.R8GM

Entry Name: North Queensferry, Railway Pier Including Associated Goods Yard Pier and Disembarkation Pier

Listing Date: 27 November 1996

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 390499

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB43863

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Inverkeithing

County: Fife

Electoral Ward: Inverkeithing and Dalgety Bay

Parish: Inverkeithing

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North Queensferry


Possibly Thomas Bouch, 1877; E slip extended circa 1935. Long jetty and pier-head, with associated former goods yard pier to E. Large squared concrete blocks in courses, hammer-dressed sandstone coping; sett and concrete surfacing; steel buttresses along lower slipway; steel mooring bollards to lower and upper jetties; sloping masonry to W with ferry moorings. Entire structure partially covered by concrete render and tarmac. Square raised signal cabin, partly derelict, standing on upper level. GOODS YARD PIER: sloping coursed masonry and random rubble, tarmac surface. Associated timber and steel square disembarkation pier off shore to E, gangway now missing.

Statement of Interest

This pier served an important role in the history of the Queensferry Passage, with particular relevance to the improvement of the train service to Dunfermline prior to the opening of the Forth Bridge, which itself had been planned from 1873. The North British Railway Company secured rights to the Queensferry Passage in 1867 as an alternative to the Granton-Burntisland crossing, extending a line from Ratho first to Dalmeny then to Port Edgar (South Queensferry) by 1868. In 1872, a railway from Dunfermline to Inverkeithing and North Queensferry was planned by the Dunfermline and Queensferry Railway Company. This line was opened in 1877 and transferred to the North British Railway Company in the same year. Sir Thomas Bouch, engineer to the North British Railway, presumably designed and constructed the Railway Pier. Bouch was responsible for designing the failed Tay Bridge and also designed the first ferry in the world to transport train carriages. Dubbed the 'floating railway', this service opened in 1850, transporting goods and not passengers between Granton and Burntisland. In 1887, there were five trains per day running from Edinburgh to Dunfermline, with a ferry crossing taking ten minutes. With the opening of the Forth Bridge in 1890, the Railway Pier continued to be used as a goods pier (until 1954) and became the main landing place for road traffic until the opening of the Forth Road Bridge in 1964 when the ferry passage ceased altogether. The ferry service was taken over in 1935 by William Denny and Brothers, Dumbarton, who were probably responsible for the extension of the E slip. The Railway Pier is now used as part of North Queensferry Marina (2003).

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