Tracking our railway history

Archivist Sean Watson & Rod Lugg (CARS Project Manager) who are setting up an exhibition in Gorebridge to mark the history of the railway in Midlothian, to mark its return next month.
Archivist Sean Watson & Rod Lugg (CARS Project Manager) who are setting up an exhibition in Gorebridge to mark the history of the railway in Midlothian, to mark its return next month.

With the Borders Railway set to open next month, two local events will give people the chance to look back at Midlothian’s railway history.

Dalkeith Melville Housing Association and Dalkeith History Society are putting on a talk and exhibition on August 26 at Dalkeith Arts Centre, 6.30pm, given by Brian Scott - railway enthusiast and member of Dalkeith History Society - about the early railways of Dalkeith.

While in Gorebridge , the Gorebridge CARS project together with the Gorebridge Development Trust are decking out the Trust’s office at 58 Main Street with a railway theme, for an exhibition about the history of Gorebridge Train Station.

Rod Lugg, heritage development officer for Melville Housing, said: “The talk is about early railways in Dalkeith.

“Brian has produced these drawings of long lost viaducts. So we are going to put an exhibition on so people can see them and learn more about Dalkeith’s railway history.

“In Gorebridge we have done a little exhibition about the station there.

“We also have a leaflet about it which will be distributed shortly.

“We will have an electric railway on display, old railway posters from the 1930s and we are trying to see if we can get any from the old Waverley Line.

“We are also planning a heritage trail around Gorebridge to show how things have changed since the railway closed. We will have leaflets at the train station so people can get off here and look around.

“That should be ready for Spring next year.”

He added: “It’s definitely important that the railway is returning to the area.

“People have been coming in with old stories about the railway, it’s good that it’s coming back to Midlothian.”

Rod has also been busy drawing cartoons of local railway stories from the past.

He said: “They will be in the leaflets about the railway in Gorebridge.

“The archivist we have here has been telling me all these quite funny, quirky stories about the railway in Gorebridge and I just visualised them as cartoons and drew them.

“I enjoyed drawing them.”