Story of Hassendean Station

  • 1846 Work began on the Edinburgh to Hawick railway
  • 1849 Edinburgh to Hawick opened – NBR (North British Railway)
  • 1859 Work began on Border Union Railway to Carlisle
  • 1862 Hawick to Carlisle opened – NBR (Border Union Railway Co.) – Waverley Route
  • 1876 London to Edinburgh NBR – through trains
  • 1923 NBR taken over by LNER (London and North Eastern Railway)
  • 1948 LNER taken over by British Rail
  • 1969 5th January Last passenger train IM82 21.56 Edinburgh-Waverley hauled by Class 45 D60
  • 1969 Waverley closed as a result of Dr Beeching
  • 1970 Inspection salon car ran over route pre demolition bids
  • 1970 Up line lifted Hawick – longtown
  • 1971 Down line track lifted Hawick – Longtown
  • 1971 18th April Last train over Hawick Station Viaduct hauled D3880 (08713)
  • 1972 Entire track lifted Longtown – Newtongrange
  • 1984-1988 Negotiated purchase Hassendean Station
  • 1989 Successfully purchased
  • 1991 Planning eventually granted for Change of Use of Station to our House and Waiting Room to the Office for Pyemont Design greenarchitecture
  • 1997 Conversion of Hassendean Station into our House and Planning Permission granted to rebuild The Loading Bay (stolen after the line closed), as a Garage + Studio
  • 1998 Converted the Waiting Room for Pyemont Design greenarchitecture
  • 1998 House completed
  • 2002 Further alterations and extensions to the House.
  • 2012 Contemporary conversion of The Loading Bay into a 2 double bedroomed luxury cottage for Self Catering Holidays
  • 2013 Alteration + Extension to the former Signalman’s Cottage – into 2 (double + single) bedroomed, pet friendly luxury cottage for Self Catering Holidays

    Interesting facts + stories:


    The 1851 census suggests that there was no living accommodation or resident agent at Hassendean Station, even though the station was open.

    Robert Watson was most likely the first stationmaster. Born in Chirnside 1818. Before entering railway service he helped his father (from the age of 15) in his carrier business between Chirnside and Edinburgh. He initially worked as foreman porter at Galashiels Station and probably came to Hassendean Station around 1854. In his obituary, it stated that “there was never a more obliging or more cheerful stationmaster and helpful ways made him a universal favourite”. On giving up the station master post in around 1881, he farmed at Townhead of Minto with his son Robert until his death in 1906. His funeral was one of the biggest in the district for many years and he is buried in the cemetery at Minto.

    He was succeeded by his son George in around 1881 who remained as stationmaster until 1906. Another son, James was a porter then signalman at Hassendean Station. This means that the Watson Family looked after the station for more than 50years, the family also ran a coal business from the station.

    There is a gap in the information from 1906 – 1929 when it is probable that the next stationmaster was Andrew Dickson who left as Shankend and stayed at Hassendean Station until1929 when he was succeeded by a Mr Alexander until 1929.

    The next incumbent was a Mr Stewart who was sacked in 1934, allegedly for staging a fake robbery in the station office (now our kitchen) so that he could steal the money in the safe.

    In 1939 George Black to on the role of stationmaster, he came from Torrance near Glasgow, and remained in place until his retiral in 1966. His post was taken over from 1966 – 1969 on the station’s closure by the porters. George Black lived in The Station House and is also buried in Minto cemetery, so the first and last stationmasters of Hassendean Station are buried there.

    Hassendean Station Conversion:

    • Located on the “Up to London” side of the Platform
    • Platform Level – upper floor

           Ticket Office Kitchen + stair to Goods Yard Level Bedrooms
    General Waiting Room Sitting Room
    Ladies Waiting Room + Toilet Principal Bedroom + Ensuite

    • Goods Yard Level – lower floor

           Oil store Bedroom
    Stationmasters store Bedroom
    Water Pump room Stair and Hallway
    Rubble filled void under General Waiting Room excavated for        Bathroom

    • Externally on the “Up to London” side of the Platform

           Gentleman’s Toilet Renovated and back in use
    The Loading Bay (Goods Shed) Stolen during station closure            and now rebuilt for luxury Self-catering holiday accommodation

    • Externally on the “Down from London” side of the Platform

    The Waiting Room Studio for Pyemont Design greenarchitecture

    • The track bed between the Platforms was filled in, principally for safety as all of the ballast had been removed – it is now been cleverly landscaped into separate areas with a pond outside the Station and a private garden to The Loading Bay holiday cottage.


    Joining both sides of the platforms, over the railway track, is the original Timber Footbridge, its construction date is not known but there is photographic record of its existence 1902. It is understood that the footbridge is the last surviving example still insitu anywhere in Scotland and possibly the UK. Now another renovation project if you would like to help and become a “Friend of Hassendean Station” please contact me for further details.

    Thanks to David Tough who contributed the early history and the personalities.

    Tom Pyemont 2013


Photographs used on this web site have been obtained from a variety of sources.  Those obtained directly from the original photographer or a picture library have been duly acknowledged, but some may have been acquired on the open market and, despite attempts at tracing their origin, many of these inevitably remain anonymous. These are usually credited to the ‘collection’ of the contributor.  If, through no fault of our own, photographs or images have been used without due credit or acknowledgement, then apologies are offered.  If anyone believes this to be the case, then please let us know and the necessary credit will be added at the earliest opportunity.