North British Railway


North British Railway

Click or tap the thumbnail for a description and photograph of each listed signal box. These are, in some cases, supplemented by other related pictures of the same box, denoted by the following icons:

Page includes views of box interior
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Page includes close-up views of box diagram
Page includes views of signals and other outdoor equipment
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The North British Railway built their own signal boxes from the 1860s, but standard designs didn’t come until 1873 Even then there were many variations, including completely different designs on some lines or in geographical areas.


Smeaton Junction

A signal box built in the 1860s but of surprisingly modern appearance against many later NBR boxes.

Cambus Junction

In 1873, the North British introduced their first standard design. With thick brick pillars between sash windows, this type was looking distinctly outdated when the last examples were being built in 1908.

Thornton North

A rare all-timber example of the 1873 design.


An improved design eliminating the thick pillars appeared in 1878 but it didn’t fully supersede the previous design.

Hartwoodhill Junction

The improved signalman’s view of the 1878 design was further enhanced with taller windows around 1890 but again older designs continued in production.


A rare all-timber example of the new design introduced around 1890.

Riccarton South

One of several non-standard boxes to be found around the North British Railway system. This was constructed in brick but subsequently rendered.

Scotsgap Junction

Many do not appreciate that North British Railway had a small network of lines south of the Scottish border – the boxes there featured rather steeper hipped roofs than usually found in the company’s signal boxes.


An all-timber signal box with a gabled roof – this example seems to break all the traditions of NBR signal box architecture!

Mallaig  Junction

The 1894 West Highland Railway signal boxes were built to their own individual design. Unusually, the internal equipment was provided by Saxby & Farmer,

Arrochar & Tarbet

Lesser West Highland Railway signal boxes located on platform were to a different design, to harmonise with the station buildings.

Banavie Swing Bridge

The West Highland Extension of 1901 was a Railway Signal Company contract, and the architecture featured much of their standard design but with a hipped roof.


The Railway Signal Company had previously secured a small contract in 1892, using their standard design of box.

Swing Bridge East

A non-standard signal box was provided here when the line was doubled and a new swing bridge provided in 1899.

Dalmuir Park

A few signal boxes west of Glasgow were built to an unusual design with arched windows and a gabled roof in 1897.

Waverley East

A major rebuild of Edinburgh Waverley station in the late 1890s warranted two extremely large and flamboyant signal boxes.

Leith Central

A couple of boxes at important locations dating from 1903 had extra features provided, presumably, to impress.


A non-standard signal box erected in 1906.

Touch North Junction

A new standard design arrived in 1908 and superseded the early types that had been built concurrently. It featured small upper windows above the main ones.

Thornton Station

Whilst most boxes of the 1908 design followed NBR practice of brick construction, a few wooden ones were built in special circumstances.

Dundee Central

The 1908 design was modified in 1919 to eliminate the upper windows. This type continued in use by the NBR’s successor until 1935.

The North British Railway became part of the London & North Eastern Railway in 1923.


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