150 year train journey

The Earl of Stair and Alex Fergusson MSP unveil the commemorative plaque to mark the 150th anniversary of the railway arriving at Stranraer Rail Station, '1st October 1862 - 1st October 2012. Pictured left to right, Richard Carr secretary/treasurer of SAYLSA, Alex ferguson MSP, Lord Stair, Bob Hill, act/Chairperson SAYLSA.

The Earl of Stair and Alex Fergusson MSP unveil the commemorative plaque to mark the 150th anniversary of the railway arriving at Stranraer Rail Station, '1st October 1862 - 1st October 2012. Pictured left to right, Richard Carr secretary/treasurer of SAYLSA, Alex ferguson MSP, Lord Stair, Bob Hill, act/Chairperson SAYLSA.

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A plaque was unveiled recently at Stranraer Railway Station to commemmorate the arrival of the train to the town 150 years ago.

Galloway MSP Alexgusson and The Earl of Stair were joined by Richard Carr and Bob Hill from SAYLSA (Stranraer to Ayr Line Support Association).

In 1862, a railway opened between Castle Douglas and Portpatrick, built as part of a deal between the Government and the Royal Mail. This was to restore a ferry link that had operated between 1662 and 1849 across the short channel crossing from Scotland to Donaghadee in County Down. In the event, it was nearby Stranraer and Larne rather than Portpatrick and Donaghadee that became the terminal points of the North Channel ferry crossing. The harbour branch at Stranraer opened in October 1862.

Alex Fergusson said: “I was honoured to be asked by SAYLSA to unveil a plaque with Lord Stair to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Stranraer station. In doing so I was pleased to echo the sentiment that the occasion should mark the start of the next phase of the stations’ life in a positive way and that existing fears over the future of the railway line to and from Stranraer would remain unfounded.”