The Belfast – Bangor railway line :: Shared Description

The Belfast & County Down Railway (BCDR) opened its railway line from Belfast (Queen’s Quay) to Holywood on 2 August 1845. This line was extended to the seaside resort of Bangor by the Belfast Holywood & Bangor Railway (BHBR), which opened on 18 May 1865. The BCDR absorbed the BHBR in 1884.

While double-track throughout, the BCDR always regarded its Bangor line as a branch off the main line to Newcastle. However, creation of the nationalised Ulster Transport Authority (UTA) in 1948 changed matters somewhat as only the Belfast – Bangor line survived the mass closures implemented by the UTA in 1950. The old BCDR Bangor line received a further blow in 1965 when it was isolated from the rest of the Irish railway system by closure of the Belfast Central Railway line from Ballymacarrett Junction (east of Queen’s Quay station) to Central Junction, just west of the former GNR(I) Great Victoria Street station (see: Link ). However, on a positive note, introduction of UTA built MED railcars gave Belfast – Bangor the distinction of being the first main railway line in the British Isles to be operated solely by diesel traction.

In 1976, the Belfast Central Railway reopened as part of a project to replace both the GNR(I) Great Victoria Street station and the BCDR Queen’s Quay with a “central” station situated in east Belfast. Today (2013), Belfast – Bangor is an important part of the Northern Ireland Railways’ system, with services to Bangor originating from Portadown or the reinstated Great Victoria Street station. While diesel locomotives may occasionally visit with engineer’s trains, all passenger services are in the hands of Spanish built 3000 or 4000 class railcars.

For photographs of the former line to Newcastle, please see: Link . For photographs at Queen's Quay station and Central Services Depot, please go to: Link
by The Carlisle Kid
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374 images use this description. Preview sample shown below:

J3775 : Train and road traffic, Sydenham, Belfast by Albert Bridge
J5081 : Arrival at Bangor station by Albert Bridge
J4881 : Bangor West railway station by Rossographer
J3474 : Railway arch, Belfast (2) by Albert Bridge
J4782 : Railway bridge near Crawfordsburn by Albert Bridge
J3675 : Railway safety barrier, Belfast by Albert Bridge
J4882 : Carnalea railway halt [2] by Rossographer
J3979 : Railway bridge, Holywood (1) by Albert Bridge
J4079 : Old lamp. Marino station by Albert Bridge
J4481 : Railway bridge, Seahill, Bangor (December 2017) by Albert Bridge
J4582 : Helen's Bay station (2) by Albert Bridge
J5081 : Train, Bangor by Albert Bridge
J3574 : Train near Bridge End, Belfast (2) by Albert Bridge
J3474 : Railbus, Belfast by Albert Bridge
J4079 : Bridge, Marino station (2) by Albert Bridge
J3474 : Weir and cross-harbour bridges, Belfast (33) by Albert Bridge
J3574 : Train near Bridge End, Belfast by Albert Bridge
J4180 : Road bridge, Cultra station by Albert Bridge
J3775 : Morning peak, Sydenham station, Belfast (March 2018) by Albert Bridge
J5081 : Locomotive hauled special train departing Bangor - 2003 by The Carlisle Kid
J3474 : The Laganbank Road railway bridge, Belfast by Albert Bridge
J3979 : Railway subway, Holywood by Albert Bridge
J4981 : 80-class set approaching Bangor station - 1977 by The Carlisle Kid
J3574 : Train near Bridge End, Belfast (2) by Albert Bridge
J3979 : Peak train at Holywood by Albert Bridge

... and 349 more images.

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Created: Tue, 19 Nov 2013, Updated: Sun, 22 Dec 2013

The 'Shared Description' text on this page is Copyright 2013 The Carlisle Kid, however it is specifically licensed so that contributors can reuse it on their own images without restriction.

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