Signals

THE SIGNAL BOX


Railway signalling discussion

Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

British signalling of the past (UK, excepting Northern Ireland)

Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Peter Gibbons » Thu Mar 30, 2017 10:49 pm

I believe there was a plan in either 1960s or 1970s to control the entire Southern Region of BR from just 13 power signal boxes. Some of the power signal boxes were actually built and commissioned - I believe Dartford was one such location, although I also remember that there was a large blank area of the panel that I was told was for the resignalling of the Maidstone West line, but that part of the scheme was never implemented. Others were never even built.

I would like to know the locations of the proposed 13 power signal boxes and if possible the areas that they were intended to control.
Peter G
User avatar
Peter Gibbons
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 1:07 pm
Location: Hassocks, West Sussex

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Mad Mac » Fri Mar 31, 2017 1:17 am

You may find this, and the subsequent parts, interesting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUpDzO0dHUI
Mad Mac
Rest-day relief
Rest-day relief
 
Posts: 632
Joined: Sat Nov 10, 2007 11:47 pm

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Bob Davies » Fri Mar 31, 2017 11:10 am

We discussed this topic in general, and this film in particular, on the old board but I can't find a link to it.

The film, in spite of its high quality, is in fact an amateur production made by Peter and Barbara Flook. I worked with Peter, who was a fine signalling installation manager, when I was at Croydon and he retired in about 1986.
Last edited by Bob Davies on Thu Apr 6, 2017 2:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Bob D
User avatar
Bob Davies
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 327
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 8:32 pm
Location: Kidderminster

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Peter Gibbons » Fri Mar 31, 2017 5:19 pm

Having looked at all 7 parts of the video, it did suggest that London Bridge was to one of the 13 boxes, and indeed some boxes were abolished as part of the Dartford scheme, but never actually controlled by it, control on that area being provided via a temporary panel in St Johns Box. I assume that was done so that it would eliminate pockets of absolute block working between the London fringes of the new Dartford Panel and the already TCB areas extending out from London Bridge, albeit that these areas to were due to resignalled later in the 1970s.

I had an idea that Three Bridges wasn't part of the original 13 boxes, with new boxes planned for both East Croydon and Brighton originally.

As I understood it, this plan, if fully implemented, would have completely eliminated absolute block work and semaphore signalling over the entire Southern Region of BR. I do remember when I first entered the signalling grade in the mid 1970s that all semaphore signalling would be eliminated by 1980!
Peter G
User avatar
Peter Gibbons
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 1:07 pm
Location: Hassocks, West Sussex

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby DY444 » Sat Apr 1, 2017 11:31 am

My recollection is that the 13 were:
SWD: Waterloo, Feltham, Guildford, Basingstoke, Eastleigh
CD: Croydon, Brighton
SED: Dartford, Tonbridge, Gillingham, Ashford
CD + SED: Victoria, London Bridge
DY444
Crossing box
Crossing box
 
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 1:59 pm

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby KEVIN SMITH » Sun Apr 2, 2017 8:43 pm

What i would like to know is what did they intend to do with all the level crossings on the system ? . CCTV had not been invented then or was in its infancy AHB crossings were not suitable for all types of road so the only option would be to convert many former signal boxes into gate boxes so there would be not much saving in manpower or wages unless they had another idea ?
KEVIN SMITH
Crossing box
Crossing box
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Mon Dec 9, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby davidwoodcock » Sun Apr 2, 2017 9:45 pm

Although the 13 box scheme did not happen in its entirety, sufficient did happen to be able to say that at level crossings existing boxes would have been converted to gate boxes, at least in the earliest implementations. CCTV was only in its infancy then, but it grew up quite quickly so probably as schemes progressed many (most) crossings not suitable for AHB treatment would have got CCTV instead.
davidwoodcock
Rest-day relief
Rest-day relief
 
Posts: 925
Joined: Tue Jul 12, 2011 7:58 am
Location: Champlon, Belgique

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Peter Gibbons » Mon Apr 3, 2017 1:08 pm

KEVIN SMITH wrote:What i would like to know is what did they intend to do with all the level crossings on the system ? . CCTV had not been invented then or was in its infancy AHB crossings were not suitable for all types of road so the only option would be to convert many former signal boxes into gate boxes so there would be not much saving in manpower or wages unless they had another idea ?


In the case of Dartford an early scheme plan proposed that all level crossings would be converted to AHB operation. Of course that never happened, but some crossings were converted to CCTV operation before they were finally closed. For example Belvedere crossing was converted to CCTV control and controlled by nearby Crabtree Crossing. The only crossing that remained was Stone Crossing but even that is now closed to road traffic and when it gains a footbridge the crossing itself will be abolished.

It is interesting that within the London Bridge ASC area Charlton Lane Crossing is still controlled from the adjacent gate box, and there are no immediate plans for this crossing to change even after the abolition of London Bridge ASC.
Peter G
User avatar
Peter Gibbons
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 1:07 pm
Location: Hassocks, West Sussex

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Peter Gibbons » Mon Apr 3, 2017 1:22 pm

DY444 wrote:My recollection is that the 13 were:
SWD: Waterloo, Feltham, Guildford, Basingstoke, Eastleigh
CD: Croydon, Brighton
SED: Dartford, Tonbridge, Gillingham, Ashford
CD + SED: Victoria, London Bridge


Many thanks for that. This seems to be what I thought it would be.
Peter G
User avatar
Peter Gibbons
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 1:07 pm
Location: Hassocks, West Sussex

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Fast Line Floyd » Mon Apr 3, 2017 2:01 pm

KEVIN SMITH wrote:What i would like to know is what did they intend to do with all the level crossings on the system ? . CCTV had not been invented then or was in its infancy AHB crossings were not suitable for all types of road so the only option would be to convert many former signal boxes into gate boxes so there would be not much saving in manpower or wages unless they had another idea ?

It was the large number of level crossings and a restriction that only four could be controlled by one signaller that largely laid the original plan to rest, Feltham still has one panel for which the sole purpose is to control four CCTV level crossings and their protecting signals and little else.
Graham
User avatar
Fast Line Floyd
Main line box
Main line box
 
Posts: 1596
Joined: Tue May 26, 2009 11:42 am
Location: Raunds

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Peter Gibbons » Mon Apr 3, 2017 11:07 pm

Fast Line Floyd wrote:
KEVIN SMITH wrote:What i would like to know is what did they intend to do with all the level crossings on the system ? . CCTV had not been invented then or was in its infancy AHB crossings were not suitable for all types of road so the only option would be to convert many former signal boxes into gate boxes so there would be not much saving in manpower or wages unless they had another idea ?

It was the large number of level crossings and a restriction that only four could be controlled by one signaller that largely laid the original plan to rest, Feltham still has one panel for which the sole purpose is to control four CCTV level crossings and their protecting signals and little else.


Best not tell the signaller at Chichester then! That single manned box has 5 CCTV crossings, Drayton CCTV at 26M 48Ch, Whyke Road CCTV at 27M 70Ch, Basin Road CCTV at 28M 39Ch, Stockbridge Road CCTV at 28M 43Ch and Southbourne CCTV at 34M 22Ch, not to mention 8 AHB crossings in between Chichester and Southbourne.
Peter G
User avatar
Peter Gibbons
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 1:07 pm
Location: Hassocks, West Sussex

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Fast Line Floyd » Tue Apr 4, 2017 4:57 pm

Peter Gibbons wrote:
Fast Line Floyd wrote:
KEVIN SMITH wrote:What i would like to know is what did they intend to do with all the level crossings on the system ? . CCTV had not been invented then or was in its infancy AHB crossings were not suitable for all types of road so the only option would be to convert many former signal boxes into gate boxes so there would be not much saving in manpower or wages unless they had another idea ?

It was the large number of level crossings and a restriction that only four could be controlled by one signaller that largely laid the original plan to rest, Feltham still has one panel for which the sole purpose is to control four CCTV level crossings and their protecting signals and little else.


Best not tell the signaller at Chichester then! That single manned box has 5 CCTV crossings, Drayton CCTV at 26M 48Ch, Whyke Road CCTV at 27M 70Ch, Basin Road CCTV at 28M 39Ch, Stockbridge Road CCTV at 28M 43Ch and Southbourne CCTV at 34M 22Ch, not to mention 8 AHB crossings in between Chichester and Southbourne.

Indeed but I suspect these were added to Chichester more recently than Feltham as the rule was changed at some stage post Feltham that only four CCTV crossings that would be in use at the same time were permitted so potentially there is no limit to the number of CCTV crossings just so long as they do not all require to be operated at the same time.
Graham
User avatar
Fast Line Floyd
Main line box
Main line box
 
Posts: 1596
Joined: Tue May 26, 2009 11:42 am
Location: Raunds

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Dave J » Sat Apr 15, 2017 5:06 pm

Peter Gibbons wrote:I believe there was a plan in either 1960s or 1970s to control the entire Southern Region of BR from just 13 power signal boxes. Some of the power signal boxes were actually built and commissioned - I believe Dartford was one such location, although I also remember that there was a large blank area of the panel that I was told was for the resignalling of the Maidstone West line, but that part of the scheme was never implemented. Others were never even built.

I would like to know the locations of the proposed 13 power signal boxes and if possible the areas that they were intended to control.


I seem to remember that the scheme was originally for 24 power signal boxes someone in the SRS had this information but as we know it was reduced to 13. There were a couple of articles Modern railways, Railway magazine all from the beginning of 1970.
The truth and nothing but the truth.
User avatar
Dave J
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 119
Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2007 5:33 pm
Location: Reading

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby Chris Rideout » Sat Apr 15, 2017 5:30 pm

I joined the railway in 1969 and the 13 box plan was indeed the talk of the town. One surprise was Surbiton panel. It was not shown on the plan even though it was either being built or had only just opened.

Built in obsolescence?
Chris Rideout
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 312
Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2011 4:59 pm
Location: Sunny South Coast

Re: Proposed 13 Power signal Boxes on Southern Region

Unread postby DY444 » Sat Apr 22, 2017 11:56 am

My recollection is that Surbiton was originally provided as a "stop gap" as the existing signalling and a shortage of staff was proving to be an impediment to operating the post Bournemouth electrification timetable.
DY444
Crossing box
Crossing box
 
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 1:59 pm

Next

Return to Signalling - historical

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 2 guests