Gort, Co.Galway, is located on the Waterford Limerick & Western Railway's line from Limerick to Sligo, the first section of which opened in September 1869, and was latterly taken over by the Great Southern & Western Railway in 1901. Passenger services on the line from Limerick via Gort through to Athenry and Claremorris ended in April 1976, although the line remained in use for freight and excursion traffic up to the late 1990s. However in March 2010, passenger services were restored on the Limerick to Galway line via Athenry and the station at Gort was rebuilt The original stone built station of 1869 is located just south of the new up & down platforms. The goods shed as well as the former water tower complete with tank has also been preserved. The only structure not to remain was the GSWR built signal cabin, demolished to make way for the up platform, which is now connected to the down side by a modern footbridge.
A March 2008 view of Gort Station, looking north towards Athenry showing the single storey station building, platforms and goods shed. At this time the track was been relaid in preporation of the restoration of passenger services between Limerick and Galway. Gort as it was in the early 1970s, with a southbound Ballina to Limerick service arriving at the station hauled by 141 Class locomotive No.B155. ©Barry Carse Gort looking south towards Limerick showing the tidy and well kept station as it was in the early 1970s. The first member of the 181 Class locomotives dating from 1966, No.B181, arrives with the Limerick to Claremorris pick up goods train. ©Barry Carse The same location but in March 2008 during the rebuilding of the Limerick to Athenry line. On the left is the disused up platform which was subsequently demolished. The goods shed and water tower are on the right, the latter structure was later moved slightly away from the track to provide better visibility.
After regular passenger services ceased on the Limerick to Athenry line in 1976, part of the down platform was demolished to allow bagged fertiliser and cement to be loaded onto adjacent trains by forklift, seen here. The last remaining freight services over the line ceased in 2001. View of the relaid track and loop at Gort Station in March 2008. It would be another two years before the line would reopen fully between Ennis and Athenry in 2010. A view looking north towards Athenry at Gort Station, with the 1869 built vintage water tower on the left, complete with tank. To the right can be seen the disused Great Southern & Western Railway signal cabin. A view looking south towards Limerick at the end of the down platform at Gort Station, showing the recently relaid track. On the right can be seen a public footpath which leads down to Gort town.
The road side view of the large stone built goods shed at Gort, located at the north end of the station. The shed remained in use for storing bagged fertiliser and cement until the mid 1990s. The former goods yard at Gort Station, with the sidings lifted. New concrete sleepers and materials for the new railway station are seen delivered in the yard. The goods shed still retains its wooden canopy on the road side of the structure. A view of the north end of Gort Station, showing the one time goods yard, where in this early 1970s view loco B181 is seen shunting some loose coupled wagons. The freight traffic at Gort gradually faded out in the 1990s and the yard became disused. ©Barry Carse In later years the goods yard at Gort Station became home for redundant freight wagons awaiting scrapping. Here a rake of 1966 vintage ore wagons used on the Silvermines to Foynes ore traffic are seen in the rusty sidings at Gort.
A regular freight train seen passing through Gort was the Athenry to Limerick bulk cement train, seen been hauled by 001 Class locomotive No.038 in May 1982. In this view is the neat GSWR signal cabin. ©Barry Carse This was the 1860s GSWR signal cabin at Gort as it was in March 2008 during the rebuilding of the station and line. The signal cabin had been out of use for a number of years before reconstruction work on the line began, the loop having been disconnected in 2003. The cabin was subsequently demolished to make way for the new up platform. The interior of Gort signal cabin in the summer of 2002, showing the lever frame and token machines. The cabin had been 'switched out' for a number of years. Work on relaying the line to Athenry is seen at the north end of Gort Station in March 2008. The loop had already been reliad and the new signal posts installed.
A few months later in August, the signal heads have been added to the signal posts but are awaiting commision. There is now no mechanical signalling in use between Limerick and Athenry. The new turnout of the loop at the north end of Gort Station. This loop is regularly used for crossing trains operating between Limerick and Galway. This was the northern approach to Gort in the summer of 2002, with the station visible in the distance. The semaphore signal here is an original Great Southern & Western type. The same location but in August 2008, showing the reliad track and station visible in the distance. The loop is considerably long to accommodate any possible future freight trains operating between Limerick and Athenry.
This is the reopened station at Gort, with modern up & down platforms and footbridge. 071 Class loco No.083 stands at the head of an Irish Railway Record Society special from Limerick to Athenry, formed of Mk3 coaching stock. A view looking south towards Limerick at Gort, with the site of the original station in view. The original stone built buildings have been restored and former goods yard is now a car park.