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Dunkeld

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Dunkeld

Unread postby colin1501 » Sun Oct 9, 2016 7:31 pm

On a recent visit to Dunkeld, on the Perth to Inverness line, I was puzzled by the down home signal, which comprises a bracket with the lower, left-hand doll reading to the 'down' platform line, and the taller, right-hand doll reading to the 'up'. Reading earlier posts on here and looking at John Hinson's diagram, I realise that what appears to be the 'up' line is actually the up/down 'main' line, while the other is the 'down loop', only used normally when up and down trains have to cross, or one down train overtakes another.

However, there is only a down starting signal on the loop, but none on the up/down main. I assume, therefore, that the down main home (right-hand doll) can only be cleared when the route is set that way and the single-line section to Pitlochry is clear - can anyone confirm? If so, the arrangements are identical to those at Bentley, between Farnham and Alton in Hampshire, albeit there controlled by colour-light signals worked from Woking signalling centre.

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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Signal-sighter » Sun Oct 9, 2016 8:56 pm

You are correct in your assumption.
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Benhar Jnc » Tue Oct 11, 2016 10:20 pm

Not been in the box for a few years and I wonder if the shunt keys are still operational - probably a very long time since anyone rounded a train at Dunkeld?
...... another trip working to the Dardanelles
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Signal-sighter » Wed Oct 12, 2016 12:07 am

Shunt keys are still operational and regularly used for T3s and Line Blockages (formerly T2s)
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby scarpa » Wed Oct 12, 2016 5:34 am

A similar signalling layout exists at Dullingham ,same as Bentley for trains in the down direction employing colour light signals.
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Stuart Johnson » Wed Oct 12, 2016 4:42 pm

There are several loops where similar signalling arrangements exist, and this thread is not the place to make a list of them.

Let's keep to Dunkeld, please.
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby colin1501 » Wed Oct 12, 2016 9:29 pm

Apologies, Stuart, probably my fault for mentioning Bentley in my original post. I was under the impression such arrangements were unusual, but from what you say this is obviously not the case.

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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Benhar Jnc » Fri Oct 14, 2016 5:04 pm

Signal-sighter wrote:Shunt keys are still operational and regularly used for T3s and Line Blockages (formerly T2s)


For movements requiring the withdrawal of a shunt key - I wonder if in reality on today's railway, they are physically handed to the driver or merely withdrawn, shown to the driver out the window and then placed on the shelf until the move is completed and returned.

There used to be a few stories of drivers asking what they were supposed to do with the key and how far into the section they could go! "All the way to Stanley's home signal and back to here but if you are just rounding a train that's maybe not required".
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby neil57d » Sun Oct 16, 2016 3:29 pm

The layout at Dunkeld described by Colin (with a starter on the loop but no starter on the up and down main) is the standard layout that was used by British Rail Scottish Region at passing loops on single lines when it introduced "Scottish Region Tokenless Block" with the facility to switch out signal boxes. It was very economical because it only required one additional home signal compared with the traditional layout for a passing loop with distant, home and starter in each direction.
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Graham Maxtone » Sun Oct 16, 2016 8:53 pm

There were 2 distinct bell codes for requesting the shunt key to be released. 5-2 for shunting and 5-2-3 for an Engineers Train or Officers special to occupying the section (as far as the Home Signal at the 'box in advance as indicated above) and return to the box in rear.

For shunting the 5-2 was acknowledged by repetition and the last beat held in to allow the key to be withdrawn.

For the Engineers etc. 5-2-3 was acknowledged by repetition and again the last beat held in. When the engineers train passed the section signal at danger and entered the section 2 bells were sent and acknowledged. After the engineers train had returned the shunt key was replaced and cancelled by sending 1-3-5.

I'm not sure if these two practices still apply at Dunkeld or any other Sc.Region TB location.
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Mike Hodgson » Sun Oct 16, 2016 11:11 pm

Graham Maxtone wrote:For the Engineers etc. 5-2-3 was acknowledged by repetition and again the last beat held in. When the engineers train passed the section signal at danger and entered the section 2 bells were sent and acknowledged. After the engineers train had returned the shunt key was replaced and cancelled by sending 1-3-5.

I'm not sure if these two practices still apply at Dunkeld or any other Sc.Region TB location.


These codes were standard codes in the 1968 ScR TB regs, and retained in its Supplement No. 1 dated 1969. This booklet was issued in Glasgow and its format is different from the other supplements for TCB etc which were issued in the 1960s. It specifically remained in force when the 1972 green book replaced the 1960 version, although WR TB had been incorporated, but I don't know what happened in all the subsequent rewrites.

By 2003 the books split TB into Module 5 and the bell codes into SGIs, Module 1. However the bell codes in those SGIs only applied to AB, ETB or TCB, whilst the TB book only shows WR type instruments and doesn't mention bells. It seems as though London thought the WR version the only kind of TB, and Scotland more or less had independence. But I can't believe the 1968 book would still be in force so presumably the whole of ScR TB got moved into local instructions at some point?

I would have thought the practice would be useful for snow ploughing at Dunkeld, (the last time I was along the A9, it wasn't possible to enter Dunkeld station car park because of the way road snow ploughs were working) even if engineering works may now come under other rules. I did wonder whether the signalman had to dig himself out at the end of his shift!
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Signal-sighter » Tue Oct 18, 2016 10:41 pm

The ScR Tokenless Block regs are issued locally and are currently in the process of being updated for the first time in a few years. 5-2 and 2-5 are still used but 5-2-3 and 1-3-5 are both long gone. With regard to shunt keys, the driver is still meant to be handed the key before passing the section signal. Legend has it that immediately following a derailment on the traps exiting the sidings at Dunkeld the signaller ran out of the box clutching the shunt key and handed it to the driver with the words "You'll be needing this!"
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Mike Stone » Wed Oct 19, 2016 12:08 pm

Surely that would be rather altruistic, transfering the blame firmly to the signaller?
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby Signal-sighter » Wed Oct 19, 2016 2:22 pm

Well, the points hadn't been pulled...
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Re: Dunkeld

Unread postby mossend4 » Wed Oct 19, 2016 2:28 pm

Mike Stone wrote:Surely that would be rather altruistic, transfering the blame firmly to the signaller?


Reading the thread, ultimate responsibility must lie squarely with Management for failing to ensure that what was meant to happen did happen. Rules also say the Driver renders himself to dismissal for entering a single line section without the proper authority, the only grade to face that sanction. So not just Driver at fault here.
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