1hr 33mins
Dir: Danny Boyle
Starring: Ewan McGregor and Kelly Macdonald

Four Scottish friends suffer the highs and lows of heroin addiction

This phenomenally successful black comedy drama of the 1990s includes the famous scene filmed at Corrour station on the West Highland Line with a Class 156 ‘Sprinter’ DMU departing. Other railway scenes do feature though. During the opening sequence as Ewan McGregor is running through the streets of Edinburgh, he passes through the arch that carries Waterloo Place over Calton Road. Lying straight ahead is Edinburgh Waverley station, though it is easily missed. There is also a brief shot of a Class 87 passing on a West Coast main line express. The film is based on the book of the same name by Irvine Walsh, first published in 1993. The title is a reference to a scene (not included in the film) where Begbie and Renton meet ‘an auld drunkard’ who turns out to be Begbie’s estranged father, in the disused Leith Central railway station, which they are using as a toilet. He asks them if they are ‘trainspotting’. 21 years later the film was followed by its sequel – T2 Trainspotting (qv) and in this, the infamous scene is recreated in dream format. On the special edition 2-disc DVD of Trainspotting there is a short featurette called The Beginning which features some very good shots of the cast and crew filming at Corrour station with gay abandon. In these scenes another Class 156 DMU arrives, in the form of No.156496.

In this shot we are looking through the arch that carries Waterloo Place over Calton Road in Edinburgh. Waverley station is visible dead ahead.
In this classic shot from the film, the four friends stand on the platform at Corrour as a Class 156 ‘Sprinter’ DMU pulls out
Corrour station is the highest station in the UK, situated near Loch Ossian 1340 ft above sea level. It is also one of the most remote stations in the country, located at an isolated spot on Rannoch Moor not accessible by any public road – the nearest road is 10 miles away. This is the sight that greets you from the platform.
As the four friends leave the station platform the Class 156 heads off towards Tulloch, and eventually Fort William
This is the other railway shot in the film. A Class 87 on a West Coast main line service. The boys take this train to Glasgow, though in reality this service is going to London because the 87 is ‘pushing’ on the rear. The electric locos were normally placed on the ‘country end’ of services.
The cast and crew onboard a Class 156 ‘Sprinter’ DMU. This, and the following six screen captures, are all taken from The Beginning featurette.
Two members of the crew track walk, with the station platform to the left, and the former signal box behind. Known as the ‘old watchtower’ by Network Rail, the signal box has now been converted into sleeping accommodation with three guest rooms.
Ewen Bremner, Kevin McKidd and Ewan McGregor on the platform at Corrour as No.156496 pulls in
As the film’s producer Andrew Macdonald sits on the edge of the platform, cast and crew wander about the track in the background
Screenwriter John Hodge is seen here standing on the little used engineer’s siding
Ewen Bremner at Corrour. The cluster of crew members in the background are standing on the main line beyond Pollock Crossing which is now the only access to the station since the footbridge was removed to Rannoch in 1985.
As Jonny Lee Miller sits in the engineer’s siding at Corrour, the whole of the station forms the backdrop behind him. These interesting, but some what alarming views, were clearly carried out with the full co-operation of ScotRail and other relevant parties. The service generally runs three times a day (or once on a Sunday) so it was pretty easy to accommodate the crew between trains. It seems that the time spent at the station was used to the production crews advantage to give interviews with the cast!