Hi, I am new to the forum.
I am a professional Railwayman with 40 years (almost) technical experience of railway engineering, being a Chartered Mechanical Engineer who joined BR in 1976 straight from university. I have worked on 25kV OLE and third rail electrification, vehicle commissioning (I was the Commissioning team manager for the prototype sprinters, the Class 58 locomotives and the rebuilt Class 37s in the 1980s). I have also worked in Hongkong, Taiwan, Dubai and Brisbane and am now a contractor involved in the GE rewiring project from Bethnal Green to Chelmsford and Southend Victoria.
I am also a keen trainsimmer and I am trying to build the NCB lines from Essington Wood Sidings (on the Walsall-Rugeley line to Cradley Heath Wharf, Hollybank Colliery and Hilton Main colliery. Can anyone help me with the following (NB I have been scouring the internet for a week with little or not result):
1) the signalling diagramme and p/way layout at Essington Wood
2) What was the nature of Birdlip (?) Road "Signal box". I suspect that it was simply a gate box to operate the barriers with a home signal protecting the crossing in each direction, but I could be wrong and it could have been a block post connected by block instruments to Essington Wood.
3) Any other details of p/way arrangements, or other signalling on the branches
4) Anything else - eg drawings, diagrammes, photos - to help me in my quest.
Thanks for your assistance and I look forward to many posts with you all.