Subject: Raildate 27th May 2011
From: "Howard Sprenger" <>
Date: 27/05/2011, 15:17
To: "Yahoo Raildate" <>


The Cheshire Lines Railway between Glazebrook and Godley - A route of strategic importance
by Bob Pixton

Long before today's road-dominated freight transport service, there was a line that bypassed
the city of Manchester, to the south.  This route connected the Manchester Sheffield &
Lincolnshire Railway (later the Great Central Railway) from Sheffield with the Cheshire Lines
route between Manchester and Liverpool.  On its way, it connected with almost every other line
in the district to create a vital artery for goods traffic.

Much of the coal finding its way to south Lancashire and the docks at Liverpool passed along
this line from the pits of Yorkshire and Derbyshire.  Goods from the docks also used the line
to reach the conurbations east of the Pennines, and of course, every loaded coal and goods
wagon produced an empty one to be returned for refilling.  Certain sections of the route were
amongst the most intensively worked freight lines in the country.

The reader is taken along an imaginary journey from west to east, stopping at all the stations
and other important railway features along the line.  While the main focus of the book is the
route between the two towns, the traffic and the connections generating it are explored as they
arise along the journey.

From the author of the popular "Liverpool & Manchester" trilogy.

Softback: 136 pages with over 300 photographs
273 x 215mm
15.95 post free from the publisher



Another victim of the demise of Fotopic was Dave Rowland, whose Ian Allan ABC Books site was
mentioned a number of times here.  He now has a Smugmug site, which includes a section on the

Anyone modelling Canadian railways?



The Cromford & High Peak Railway:
(Spotter: Ted Millward)

An unintentionally humourous (one suspects) walk along the new Monsal Trail:
(Spotter: Nick Wheat)

Howard Benson's video on the Dorset Coast Express:


Ralph Rawlinson's Railway Roundup

London Crossrail
The first two tunnel boring machines (TBMs) will arrive in London in early 2012 ahead of being
launched from Royal Oak in spring 2012.  Each will be 120 metres in length and weigh 850
tonnes.  At least seven TBMs will be required to build the 21km of twin-bored tunnel, and will
undertake ten individual tunnel drives to construct the six metre diameter tunnels.  They will
run nearly 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year and, as they advance forward,
precast concrete segments will be built in rings behind them.  The concrete segments for the
western running tunnels between Royal Oak and Farringdon will be manufactured at Old Oak Common
and transported to the TBM by rail.

Docklands Light Railway
In addition to the proposed extension to Forest Hill, TfL's strategy to cater for future growth
and improve connectivity includes an eastwards line to Dagenham Dock, running close to the
River Thames for much of its length, plus the installation of double track between Bow and
Stratford.  More surprising is a westwards extension from Bank to Victoria using closed Jubilee
line platforms at Charing Cross with a branch from City Thameslink to serve Euston and St

ELR Silwood Jn - Old Kent Road Jn
Work has started on reinstating the disused line between Silwood Junction and Old Kent Road
Junction to form part of the London Orbital network.  Until 1913, this (slightly under one
mile) spur linked the East London Line to the LB&SCR's South London line to Clapham Junction,
but more recently was converted into a cyclepath.

London Underground
Treasury Holdings (owners of the Battersea Power station site) and TfL have agreed on a final
likely route for the Northern Line extension to Battersea.  It would have one intermediate
station in south Nine Elms.  Further public consultation has started and will run until 17th
June.  A map of the route is at:

A new museum built for the Bluebell Railway opens at Sheffield Park Station on 28th May.

North Cotswold Line
The improved timetable from 12th September 2011 has three additional off-peak Paddington to
Moreton-in-Marsh services, providing an almost hourly service for much of the day.  There is
also an additional 14.21 Paddington-Worcester, which plugs the gap between the 13.21 and 15.51.
Journey times are accelerated by up to 20 mins, and in December an Oxford-London peak HST is
due to start from Charlbury.

Halesowen Junction, Longbridge
The disused line into the former Rover factory at Longbridge, the last remaining part of the
GW/MR joint line from Halesowen, has recently been lifted and a substantial metal fence erected
across the trackbed at Halesowen Junction.  Network Rail has arranged for the points and
signals associated with this branch to be removed, and the track plain-lined by 27th May 2011.
Today this section of line is controlled by Saltley PSB but in the future it will transfer to
the West Midlands Signalling Centre also at Saltley.

Mountsorrel Quarry, Leicestershire
Mountsorrel Quarry had standard gauge connections north to the Midland main line near
Barrow-on-Soar and south to the GCR main line at Swithland.  The Mountsorrel Railway is
rebuilding the southern part of the former quarry line that runs 1 miles from the Great
Central Railway (GCR) at Swithland to the outskirts of Mountsorrel.  "In Loughborough" reports
that the project to restore the branch towards Mountsorrel has completed its first phase.  300m
of track is now in place and on Monday 16th May 2011, the first train ran along the line since
the track lifting train in 1959.

Merseytravel and Lancashire County Council are to jointly fund a Network Rail study into
extending the Merseyrail electric network to Skelmersdale.  The town has a population of 40,000
and, until 1963, was on the Ormskirk-Rainford Jn line, but lost its passenger service in 1956.
The study will consider three options: 1) A new line from the Kirkby-Wigan line to a parkway
station at West Pimbo, 2) Extending the new alignment all the way to Skelmersdale town centre,
3) A new parkway station on the existing Kirkby-Wigan line.

The Ministry of Environmental Protection has ordered that construction of the high-speed line
between Tianjin and Qinhuangdao in Hebei province must halt for an environmental re-evaluation,
as some locations along the line had been changed.  The rare move was the second of its kind in
less than a month.  In April the ministry demanded that the Jinan-Qingdao line in neighbouring
Shangdong province (where passenger operation started in 2009) stop running by 31st May for
failing to pass its environmental evaluation.

Expressions of interest in financing, building and operating a 1,100 km east-west railway have
been called by national railway shareholding company MTZ.  The line is to be developed in four
sections: from Dalanzadgad via Tavan Tolgoi and Tsagaan Suvarga to Saynshand on the
Trans-Mongolia route (555km), from Saynshand to Baruun-Urt (350km), Baruun-Urt to Khuut (140km)
and Khuut to Choybalsan (150km).



The McNulty Interim Railway Report:

Hi-Cube container clearance work via Romsey and Andover:

MP backs "trolley sacking" case:

South West Trains "Green Week":

Fatality at Falmer:

Street side refurbishment at Didcot Parkway approved:

Mourning the end of the restaurant car:

HST power car named after publisher Peter Fox:

Delays mark start of new Yorkshire-London rail service:

First Capital Connect passengers stuck for three hours:

Boldon East Curve restored:

Burnley council seeks to restore rail link:

Newtonhill station supporters call for re-opening:

Additional Holyhead - Cardiff service started:

Cathedrals Express on Central Wales Line:

Safari Park station proposed for Severn Valley:

Landmark honours area's mining past:

Vatican railway line opens to the public:

Suburban train accident in Soweto:

A train that's part plane, flying inches from the ground:

Icelandic volcanic ash disruption:

Toll bridge for sale:

Gourock - Dunoon ferry service:

Pylon design competition launched:

Spotters: Richard Buckby, Neil Kearns, Reg Nerps, Ralph Rawlinson, Nick Wheat


28/05/11    Channel 4  1825-2200
           "Titanic"  The 1997 blockbuster - went down well I remember

28/05/11    BBC4  2230-2300
           "Julia Bradbury's Canal Walks"  4/4 The Llangollen Canal

28/05/11    BBC4  2300-2400
           "The Golden Age of Canals"  Post-WW2

29/05/11    BBC2  1810-1900
           "Richard Hammond's Engineering Connections"  4/6 Earthquake-proof bridge

30/05/11    BBC2  2350-0040
           "Richard Hammond's Engineering Connections"  4/6 Earthquake-proof bridge

31/05/11    BBC2  2100-2200
           "The Country House Revisited"  Wentworth Woodhouse, South Yorkshire

01/06/11    BBC4  2100-2200
           "African Railway"  A look at the Tazara Railroad

03/06/11    Channel 5  2000-2100
           "Eddie Stobart: Trucks and Trailers"  3/8

03/06/11    BBC2  2100-2130
           "Julia Bradbury's Canal Walks"  1/4 The Caledonian Canal


For up-to-date information on many of the tours mentioned in Raildate (and others) often with
timings, see the Steam Tours pages at:

All details are correct to the best of my knowledge.  No responsibility is taken for
inaccuracies or changes.

28/05/11-   Winchester Cathedral: "Models & Music"
29/05/11    GWR model railway and local GWR exhibition
           At the Undercroft, next to the Education Centre in the Inner Close
           Admission by donation - proceeds to the Cathedral Music Fund

28/05/11-   Hayle Model Railway Club Exhibition
29/05/11    Hayle Day Care Centre, Commercial Road, Hayle, TR27 4DE
           1000-1600 both days

28/05/11-   Aylesbury Railex

28/05/11-   Ecclesbourne Valley Railway: Wirksworth Carnival Open Days

28/05/11-   Rhyl Miniature Railway: 100th Birthday Extravaganza
30/05/11    The United Kingdom's oldest miniature line open to the general public
           1030-1700 both days

29/05/11-   Middleton Top Winding Engine, Cromford & High Peak Rly
30/05/11    Engine in motion 1300-1630

04/06/11-   Leawood Pumping Engine Steaming Day, Cromford Canal
05/06/11    Engine in motion 1200-1700

05/06/11    Twyford Waterworks: Industrial Railways & Communications

05/06/11    Romsey Signal Box Open Day
           Admission free (donations welcome!)
           ex-Romsey Infants School, Plaza Parade, Winchester Rd, Romsey
           Car park in old school grounds

05/06/11    Andover Bus Rally

05/06/11    Cheltenham Coach Rally

05/06/11    Middleton Top Winding Engine, Cromford & High Peak Rly
           Engine in motion 1300-1630

05/06/11    Churnet Valley Railway: Alf Tunstall Classic Bus Rally

06/06/11    Peak Railway Association (Sheffield Branch) Slideshow
           The Harlequin Pub, 108 Nursery Street, Sheffield S3 8GG
           Another Round Britain Tour, John Morten

12/06/11    Strawberries and Steam
           Copythorne, nr Southampton

12/06/11    Ecclesbourne Valley Railway: Rolls Royce Meet

12/06/11    Churnet Valley Railway: Cream Tea & Steam

Cheers, Howard.
editor(at)  replace (at) with @

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(C) Howard Sprenger 2011.