The Solway Junction Railway


Opened in 1869, the SJR was a 21 mile long avoiding line which byepassed Carlisle for traffic between Cumberland and Dumfrieshire, specifically haematite ore from the Whitehaven area to the furnaces of Lanarkshire.

Single track throughout, the railway had one remarkable feature, the 1,950 yard long iron viaduct across the Solway Firth, the longest viaduct in the UK until the Tay Bridge was opened.

The viaduct may have looked spindly, and suffered major damage from sea-ice floes during the very severe winter of 1881, but it stayed in service until 1921 and wasn’t demolished for another 14 years.

First published in 1990, this is an interesting look at a largerly forgotten railway. This new edition has extra B&W photographs, of which there are a good number. 80 pages. Paperback.