Signals

THE SIGNAL BOX


Railway signalling discussion

Ashington NCB

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

Ashington NCB

Unread postby John Hinson » Sat Dec 2, 2017 11:08 am

Another curiosity from Norman:
Image
Photo N L Cadge/John Hinson collection 5/4/82.

Norman records this structure as a signal box at Ashington colliery. I am not so convinced, as I can't see any sign of rodding or signal wires. There are at least two people inside, both blobs of orange in the picture are men in overalls.

There is definitely mechanical signalling nearby, witnessed by several other pictures. If not controlled from here, what did control them?

John
Image
‹(•¿•)›
User avatar
John Hinson
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 6859
Joined: Thu Nov 8, 2007 1:13 pm
Location: at my computer

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby John Hinson » Sat Dec 2, 2017 11:12 am

PS - actually, they could be high-level signal wires emerging to the right. Other pictures show those going some distance, and they seem too closely packed to be telegraph wires. I think that post at the far end may carry a couple of wires too.
Image
‹(•¿•)›
User avatar
John Hinson
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 6859
Joined: Thu Nov 8, 2007 1:13 pm
Location: at my computer

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Sat Dec 2, 2017 11:23 pm

When I was a sixth-former I visited a colliery in Ashington (possibly not this one) - this trip was arranged by the school careers master, the NCB were hoping to recruit us as pit deputies. The colliery was no longer in production, but it still had pit ponies, and the place was used for training pitmen to do jobs such as servicing hydraulic pit props and laying narrow gauge railway track in very confined seams. The most notable thing I remember was the way miners kept appearing from behind odd buildings and saying "Whatever ye dae lads, divvent gan doon the pits"!

I agree - not a signal box, even if it has overtones of NER boxes such as Hexham. The general character of the building looks to me more like much colliery loading screens (where coal was filtered by size). The tracks underneath would be for the wagons and coal for loading would come in via conveyors on the far side of the building. I suggest this pre-1912 photo on the disused stations site shows the same building from the far side (in the background between the two tall signals), and the remains of the right hand signal would be the post you mention.
http://www.disused-stations.org.uk/h/hi ... fore7.1912)_colliery_old6.jpg

Note that the article on Hirst Platform says the line was fully signalled and track-circuited - this doesn't sound over the top for a service of 100 workmen's train daily.
User avatar
Mike Hodgson
Main line box
Main line box
 
Posts: 2485
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 5:30 pm
Location: N Herts

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby S&TEngineer » Sun Dec 3, 2017 9:44 am

A bit of web searching has come up with this:

http://www.sixtownships.org.uk/uploads/ ... 7_orig.jpg

Looks like the same building from the end elevation and windows. You can just make out the elevated signal wires and post identified in Normans photograph. Looks to me like the wires go into the building...... it would appear that all points are operated by local ground hand levers.
Regards,
S&TEngineer
-----------------------------------------------------
Out of this nettle, Danger, we pluck this flower, Safety.
Henry IV, Part 1, Act 2, Scene 3
User avatar
S&TEngineer
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 1605
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 8:17 pm
Location: Somewhere in the far South West

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby Andrew G » Sun Dec 3, 2017 9:53 am

It was a Signal Box. Most of the points were hand or spring operated.

There are some shots of the diagram on this site.

http://picssr.com/photos/limitofshunt/i ... 303995@N04

http://picssr.com/photos/limitofshunt/i ... 303995@N04
User avatar
Andrew G
Branch line box
Branch line box
 
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Jan 3, 2008 8:27 pm

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby limitofshunt » Sun Dec 3, 2017 9:39 pm

The complete album of diagram photos for Ashington Colliery signal box is here: https://flickr.com/photos/28303995@N04/ ... 9868237363

I have seen a couple of photos showing the set up on the upper floor of this building but can’t find them at the mo. I’ll keep looking!

Jonathon
limitofshunt
Crossing box
Crossing box
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Aug 9, 2014 8:55 pm

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby John Hinson » Mon Dec 4, 2017 8:16 am

Thanks for the info. I would be interested to know what type of frame the box had - perhaps a McKenzie & Holland/NER overhead frame as there would seem to be little room for locking below floor level.

Bournmoor (mentioned in another discussion) had one of those frames despite no obvious reason as it was a conventional box.

John
Image
‹(•¿•)›
User avatar
John Hinson
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 6859
Joined: Thu Nov 8, 2007 1:13 pm
Location: at my computer

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby limitofshunt » Mon Dec 4, 2017 8:44 pm

Well try as I might I can't find the photos I think I've seen. Bearing in mind that it may be age setting in early, what I do remember of them is that the operating floor was the top floor of that building in John's picture. It appeared to me to be a "normal" frame (but then again I couldn't tell the differences...) so I presumed the locking was on the floor below. It did appear that the frame was perpendicular to the tracks, i.e. it straddled the tracks that run underneath that building.

If only Google could search for "lever frame with men in white boiler suits".... :?
limitofshunt
Crossing box
Crossing box
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Aug 9, 2014 8:55 pm

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby John Hinson » Tue Dec 5, 2017 12:35 am

. . . or orange boiler suits!

No worries, thanks for looking. I expect the answer is out there somewhere.

Best regards,

John
Image
‹(•¿•)›
User avatar
John Hinson
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 6859
Joined: Thu Nov 8, 2007 1:13 pm
Location: at my computer

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby S&TEngineer » Tue Dec 5, 2017 10:12 am

Would it have been one of these frames......
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... 282%29.JPG
Regards,
S&TEngineer
-----------------------------------------------------
Out of this nettle, Danger, we pluck this flower, Safety.
Henry IV, Part 1, Act 2, Scene 3
User avatar
S&TEngineer
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 1605
Joined: Fri Nov 9, 2007 8:17 pm
Location: Somewhere in the far South West

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby Pete2320 » Wed Dec 6, 2017 1:46 am

Yes, certainly a Signalbox as already concluded. The building also served as a weighbridge. The frame was a Westinghouse "E" style which had developments over the years like the "Ax" family, I think the Ashington one was an E2. IIRC, it was installed about 1944 and originally controlled signals only, as suspected, by overhead wires. The (motor) points came c1980 when alterations were made that also affected No1 Loop and Ashington BR box. I don't think there was any block working as such here although No1Loop worked AB to the BR box using a "penguin" instrument.
There is an office copy of the diagram in the SRS archive which I photographed but unfortunately the pictures aren't very good. On that most of the points are marked "spring" but I think some at least must have been normal hand points.

Pete
Pete
Pete2320
Main line box
Main line box
 
Posts: 2119
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 10:50 pm
Location: Barton on Humber

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby Pete2320 » Wed Dec 6, 2017 1:53 am

S&TEngineer wrote:A bit of web searching has come up with this:

http://www.sixtownships.org.uk/uploads/ ... 7_orig.jpg

Looks like the same building from the end elevation and windows. You can just make out the elevated signal wires and post identified in Normans photograph. Looks to me like the wires go into the building...... it would appear that all points are operated by local ground hand levers.

Yes, the same building. Curiously the nearby signal has a wire wheel at the bottom of the post!

Pete
Pete
Pete2320
Main line box
Main line box
 
Posts: 2119
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 10:50 pm
Location: Barton on Humber

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby Pete2320 » Wed Dec 6, 2017 2:07 am

S&TEngineer wrote:Would it have been one of these frames......
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... 282%29.JPG

My first thought is that this is one of the early
McK&H frames minus the locking box for the above floor Cam and Soldier locking. However, the picture is at the Stephenson Railway Museum, North Shields where there is an E style ground frame that came from the Ashington Colliery system! Certainly it is the right general style.
It is easy to read far to much into this as there are other signalling exhibits there of not such local interest.

Pete
Pete
Pete2320
Main line box
Main line box
 
Posts: 2119
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2008 10:50 pm
Location: Barton on Humber

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby John Hinson » Wed Dec 6, 2017 9:58 am

Thanks for all the info, Pete and others.

A fascinating place.

John
Image
‹(•¿•)›
User avatar
John Hinson
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 6859
Joined: Thu Nov 8, 2007 1:13 pm
Location: at my computer

Re: Ashington NCB

Unread postby Fast Line Floyd » Wed Dec 6, 2017 2:20 pm

John Hinson wrote:Thanks for all the info, Pete and others.

A fascinating place.

John

Regrettably the true expert of this area one Mr John Talbot is no longer with us to answer these questions but I wonder what happened to his extensive photo collection.
Graham
User avatar
Fast Line Floyd
Main line box
Main line box
 
Posts: 1639
Joined: Tue May 26, 2009 11:42 am
Location: Raunds

Next

Return to Signalling - historical

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 12 guests