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Written by Robert Clarke - 03 Aug 2007
last update by Jules Hathaway - 07 Jun 2012
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Location notes
As of 2010 this depot is no longer used by DBS (nee EWS) and there is a gate at the end of the short access road in which is permanently locked. The shed is now in private railway use and access to it is not possible.
Thornton Railfreight Depot was opened originally in 1956, in connection with the nearby Rothes Colliery. The depot also replaced the cramped sidings of Thornton Junction station (closed 1967, and now replaced by Glenrothes with Thornton station). Sadly, geological problems could not be overcome at the time, and the Rothes Colliery was never opened. Despite this, the depot is still in use today, with coal, ironically, being the major traffic here.

The depot, located next to the Fife Circle, is also used to store withdrawn wagons, and, in the 1980s, withdrawn DMUs. This included the 'Mexican Bean', a class 104 DMU that had been painted in a special lviery, for use on the West Highland Line. That DMU is now scrapped.
Railway type and traffic
The main traffic here is DB Schenker class 66s pulling MGR/HAA wagons with coal. The branch to Westfield Opencast (the only part of the old Kinross-shire system still in use) diverges here. This produces the same traffic.

Important: The Fife Circle passes the depot, but from the car park, where the pictures were taken, the tracks can not be seen.
The depot is at the bottom of a small sheltered road, though the depot itself is open to the elements. There is no shelter, so if it rains, shelter in your car.
Road directions
From the A92 come off at the signs for Thornton and stay on this road. Once in Thornton, cross over the railway, and then look for the road on the left opposite RBS (Strathore Road). Turn left here, and head along this road, passing the Fire Brigade HQ. Once onto the 60mph section, look carefully for the signs for Thornton depot. They are not clear, so if you are unsure, go slowly. Once you see the signs, with 'Thornton Depot' and the EWS logo below, turn left, and head down to the car park.

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Thornton, EWS Depot map co-ordinates
There is a small car park at the depot. Park only in this car park, next to the red building, and only take pictures from the car park. Your car will be in sight at all times.The depot supervisor has no objections to you taking pictures of trains from the car park, but do move if requested.
Public transport
The nearest railway station is Glenrothes with Thornton, and this is where the nearest bus stops are as well. No bus service passes the depot. From Thornton station, head into the village itself, and at the RBS building, turn left onto Strathore Road. Walking will take about 20-30 minutes.
Bus services passing through Thronton are provided by Stagecoach in Fife. The numbers are 37 and 39. X1 only serves Thornton evenings and Sundays.
Train services are provided by First Scotrail. Please note that apart from one train a day each way, all trains leave from Platform 1.

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There are no facilities in the area. Some facilities are available in Thornton. All other facilities, including petrol stations, and toilets, are in either Glenrothes or Kirkcaldy.
A Travelodge has opened in Glenrothes, at the Bankhead junction of the A92.
Sun Compass
Sun Compass using Suncalc by brought to you by Vladimir Agafonkin:
It might be necessary to adjust the time to suit your visit, this link should open with the current day.
Thornton, EWS Depot

Googly map
Streetmap links
Thornton, EWS Depot general view map
Thornton, EWS Depot close up map

Windows Local Live Link - image quality may vary
Thornton, EWS Depot

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Photographic notes
As of 2010 this depot is no longer used by DBS (nee EWS) and there is a gate at the end of the short access road in which is permanently locked. The shed is now in private railway use and access to it is not possible.

General views - All photographs © Robert Clarke unless otherwise stated
Fig 1 - Looking south east

Fig 1 - Looking south east

Fig 2 - Looking south east

Fig 2 - Looking south east

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