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Girvan Station Including Signal Box

A Category B Listed Building in Girvan, South Ayrshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 55.2462 / 55°14'46"N

Longitude: -4.8482 / 4°50'53"W

OS Eastings: 219037

OS Northings: 598368

OS Grid: NX190983

Mapcode National: GBR 40.CKYL

Mapcode Global: WH2QR.HDJJ

Entry Name: Girvan Station Including Signal Box

Listing Date: 14 October 2004

Category: B

Source: Historic Scotland

Source ID: 397816

Historic Scotland Designation Reference: LB50007

Building Class: Cultural

Location: Girvan

County: South Ayrshire

Town: Girvan

Electoral Ward: Girvan and South Carrick

Traditional County: Ayrshire

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Girvan

Description

1946-51. Streamlined, single storey flat-roofed railway station in red brick with horizontal bands of cream-coloured faience. Entrance with paired doors (later replacements), window between; striped terrazzo step; low, broad curved canopy projecting beneath raised pediment. Flanking advanced shallow curved bays, each with 3 windows. Outer bays with 2 windows. Further long range to S with 12 windows forming band of glazing. Flat roof with overhanging eaves; some sections (trackside) probably added. Red-painted base course.

E (TRACKSIDE) ELEVATION: paired doors (later replacements) with glazing between; advanced shallow curved bays, that to left with 6 windows, 3 windows plus ticket hatch to right. Long range to left with irregular arrangement of windows and doors.

Original metal-framed hopper-type windows with lying-pane glazing (predominantly 12-pane, 4-pane upper sections).

INTERIOR: part seen (2004); retaining some original features including terrazzo floor and ticket hatch in waiting room.

SIGNAL BOX: Glasgow and South Western Railway Company (Type 3), 1893 with later alterations (see Notes). Large, 9-bay (formerly 7-bay) rectangular-plan signal box with piended, grey slate roof. Horizontal timber weather-boarding, painted white. Timber forestair and entrance to operating room at 8th bay. Brick chimney projection to rear. Non-traditional replacement windows (2012).

Statement of Interest

Built by the London Midland and Scottish Railway, Girvan is a striking and rare example of an early post-war railway station in the Moderne style in Scotland. The distinctive streamlined design with horizontal banding is to a 1930s design by the LMS architects department under W Curtis Green. Gordon Biddle has suggested its construction was delayed by the war due to a shortage of materials. The wider station remains largely intact with brick-built walkways and iron railings, an underpass with matching ironwork accessed from each platform and a cast-iron lamp on a brick gatepier.

The earlier station building of 1877 was destroyed by fire in 1946 and the present replacement was not completed until August 1951. In 1892 the line was taken over by the Glasgow and South Western Railway (GSWR) and they installed their 'Type 3' signal box here.

Signal boxes are a distinctive and increasingly rare building type that make a significant contribution to Scotland's diverse industrial heritage. Of more than 2000 signal boxes built across Scotland by 1948, around 150 currently survive (2013) with all pre-1948 mechanical boxes still in operation on the public network due to become obsolete by 2021. The signal box at Girvan is a rare representative of this important 19th century Scottish railway company. Remodelled in the late 20th century including an additional 2 bays to the right and relocation of the stair and door onto the front of the box, it nevertheless broadly retains its earlier character and contributes to the multi-period construction history at this railway station. The vast majority of signal boxes by this company, including all Type 2, 4, 5 and 6 no longer survive. A GSWR Type 1 box survives (2013) at Annan Station (see separate listing).

Girvan was a much frequented seaside resort, with people flocking largely from Glasgow and Paisley for fair weekends and summer holidays. Its combined coastal and rural setting and its rail link with Glasgow has made it a popular destination since the 19th century.

List description updated as part of Scottish Signal Box Review (2012-13).

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