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Supported by NEWHAVEN HERITAGE CENTRE which is recognised as a Scottish registered charity No. SC044837

NEWHAVEN — A  UNIQUE FISHING VILLAGE ON THE COAST OF THE FORTH, PROUD OF ITS TRADITIONS, CULTURE AND HISTORY

newhaven-on-forth

If you have contributions to make to the knowledge base and photographic archives on any of the topics on this page, they would be most welcome.  Please contact archivist@newhavenonforth.org.uk

About Us

Newhaven, Leith and Edinburgh Railway at Granton HarbourAs the amount of passengers using ferry services from Newhaven to Fife and Stirling increased, better provision for embarkation was required.  In 1822, a new chain pier was constructed slightly west of the village which benefited steam powered ferries with deeper drafts. (See a short YouTube animation of the Chain Pier here > > >)


In the late 1830s, a new railway line was proposed to bring passengers down from Edinburgh.  In 1838, a foundation stone was laid for a terminus station at beside the chain pier.  Construction of the rail line was prolonged and not without incident but in 1842, the Edinburgh, Leith and Newhaven line was opened, at first employing horse-drawn carriages but very quickly steam trains were used.


When the Duke of Buccleuch developed Granton as a harbour, the line was extended to there but the railway was popular with Newhaven’s fishwives as it saved the weary trek up to the city.  The Chain Pier booking office had a special window just for them and a dedicated carriage on the train.  A fierce storm in 1898 destroyed much of the pier and it was never rebuilt.


The line remained open until 1925 and the booking office was extended and became a pub.

Chains and Trains

An excellent resource in the form of a photo essay depicting the route taken by the railway is here>>>

A map of the E L & N Railway can be found here>>>

Granton Harbour lies on the Firth of Forth, about a mile to the west of Newhaven.  It was constructed to accommodate larger shipping than the small harbour at Newhaven could hold.   Construction of the Central pier (running from lower left to centre on this engraving) commenced in November 1835. The railway opened a few years later.



Published in Old & New Edinburgh, published 1890.


Used with the courtesy of www.edinphoto.org.uk