Having been declared a royal burgh in 1124, Stirling is filled to the brim with fascinating nooks and crannies- many of which have been forgotten by its residents.
The Facebook group ‘Old Stirling’ keeps these forgotten corners alive and describes itself as: ‘A group for OLD photos or pictures of Stirling and villages nearby…’
From longtime residents reminiscing on the glory days of establishments that have long since closed down, and their own glory days in these establishments, to old photographs of notable Stirling landmarks, this group is a living breathing archive of Stirling.
Recently Facebook user, Andrew Logan, posed a question in the group sharing how, “I have always wondered what these stairs lead to outside Stirling Railway Station?”
The stairs in question are blocked off and are located nearby the station’s front entrance.
Stirling residents sounded off in the comments with a large variety of guesses.
Mark Dormer proclaimed that, “No one knows. Nobody who ever went down them ever….. came. …. back..” whilst Jimmy Montgomery joked, “It’s a door to the upside down!”
Many users also speculated that the stairs opened up to underground tunnels beneath the tracks or alternatively that they led to bathrooms.
One user, Len Harvey, provided some insight stating that: “There were a number of tunnels under the railway station. One of which went under the current road to the old WH Smith newsagents and was used for paper deliveries every night. These steps don’t connect to any of the tunnels”
Though perhaps not as exciting as other guesses made, Harvey’s does seem to be spot on.
Stirling Railway Station Team Manager, Drew Burbidge, cleared up the mystery when interviewed clarifying that the stairs lead to an electrical switch room for the flyover and are not connected to any underground tunnels.
Another Stirling Railway Station employee also confirmed that there were indeed tunnels underneath the station that were previously used by the Royal Mail to transport post in big trollies from the town to the travelling post office which was an overnight train transporting mail from Stirling to London. Though once again, these are not connected to the stairwell.
Despite the answer seeming rather lacklustre compared to the guesses made by Stirling residents, it is undeniable that these kind of conversations and speculations sparked by ‘Old Stirling’ come with a fondness for the town and serve to keep that which may be at risk of being forgotten about ailve.