Bid to recreate military railway at Scottish naval depot

Words and pictures
by Stuart Chapman

PROGRESS on a bid to restore a closed military line in Scotland is making headway.

The Shed47 group takes its name from the original locomotive shed number at the former Royal Naval Store Depot at Lathalmond north of Dunfirmline. The preservation group is on the site of the Scottish Vintage Bus Museum which purchased a large part of the former depot in 1995.

Former MOD Hunslet No. 9045 of 1981 in mock BR livery in June.

Railways came to the area in 1864 when the West of Fife Mineral Railway opened its line from Whytemyre Junction in Dunfermline to Steelend, with a branch line from Gask Junction at Dunduff to Gask Siding. A narrow gauge line tramway was also constructed from Gask Branch to Lathalmond Quarry.

In 1941, with World War Two in progress, the Royal Navy started construction of the huge Royal Naval Stores Depot at Lathalmond. The depot was to act as a backup supply base to the important Rosyth naval dockyard a few miles to the south, in the event of Rosyth being damaged or put out of operation. The depot included a vast internal rail network connected to the main line via a curved incline.

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