12th October 1928

Trains collide at Glasgow Queen Street station

“One killed: 50 injured,” ran the headline in the Western Daily Press of 13 October 1928. That death count was set to rise – to three, with 55 injured – following the collision of two trains at Glasgow Queen Street station the previous day. “The dead man is believed to have been proceeding on his honeymoon, and one of the injured persons in the Royal Infirmary is reported to be his bride,” said the paper.

The following day’s edition of The People noted that the 25-year-old bridegroom, Mr Donaldson Gray, “was killed within three hours of his marriage and his bride had had a leg amputated.”

Violent impact

The accident had happened in a tunnel leading into the station, when the express train to Edinburgh stopped and, unable to hold its position on the steeply inclined track, rolled backwards. Since it had entered the tunnel, though, a second train, for Alloa, had been allowed to enter the tunnel so it could reposition itself for a vacant platform. This put it right in the path of the approaching Edinburgh express.

“The impact was so violent that the last three carriages of the Edinburgh train telescoped,” reported the Birmingham Daily Gazette on 13 October. “The engine of the Alloa train was derailed in the collision. The end of the rear carriage of the Edinburgh train was smashed to matchwood, but apparently not a single person had been seated there. The next carriage was crushed like pulp, and it was extraordinary that none of its passengers was killed.”



Other events that occured in October

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