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Bennie Railplane

Museum of Transport

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Bennie Railplane

The Bennie Railplane c 1930.

George Bennie was born in Auldhouse and began work on the development of his railplane in 1921. In 1929-1930 he built a trial stretch of track with one railplane car at Milngavie near Glasgow to demonstrate the system to potential clients. The car ran along an overhead monorail, stabilised by guide rails below. It moved by propellers powered by on-board motors.

Bennie planned to build railplane tracks above existing railway lines. He believed his railplane cars had the capability of travelling up to 120 miles per hour and would offer a "fast passenger and mails and perishable goods service". Slow and heavy goods freight and local passenger services would continue on the traditional rail service below. Each car could carry a maximum of forty-eight people, although the prototype had seating for less.

In spite of interest from around the world, however, Bennie could not obtain the financial backing he required to develop his revolutionary transport system. The prototype railplane lay rusting in a field at Milngavie until it was sold for scrap in 1956.

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums)

Bennie Railplane, Bennie's Railplane, monorails, railplanes, railways, trains

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