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European Railroad Discussion > Wateringbury
Date: 11/11/16 13:11
Today I took the train from London Charing Cross to Wateringbury, in Kent south east of London, a small rural station on the Medway Valley Line between Paddock Wood and Strood, serving the communities along the River Medway Including Maidstone the County Town. What has been a sleepy backwater is much busier at present on account of the on-going diversions around the viaduct problem at Lewisham, in SE London.
This is the station, built in a faux tudor style. The station building and the station house next door are today in private hands, would be passengers have a bus shelter in which to wait. The train is the 6U40 Hither Green to Stewarts Lane, one of the diverted freight workings. The South Eastern Railway was a user of staggered platforms, many of their stations are so arranged. Why? It was cheaper as they didn't need to provide a footbridge, passengers disembarked from the train and crossed behind it at track level. Cheapskates.
At the other end of the station is a set of manually operated crossing gates and a signal box. this is one of the hourly Tonbridge to Strood trains, invariably a three car 375.
And finally, Wateringbury is a fringe box with the Integrated Electronic Control Centre (IECC) at Ashford some 30 miles away, but works AB (absolute block) to East Farleigh, the next signal box to the east. And this is the double track block instrument, controlling both tracks too and from East Farleigh. It's of Southern Railway (pre-1948) design, although may well have been made by BR (Southern Region), the S&T departments tended to use up spare stock before buying new. The Southern Railway design was itself based on the casing of Sykes Lock and Block instruments, which were widely used by the end of the 19th century on the busiest lines in Southern England. Sykes himself had been an employee of the London, Chatham and Dover Railway and worked on his invention in the evenings before patenting it and going into business.
Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 11/11/16 15:47 by 86235.
Date: 11/13/16 11:48
Very interesting photos and commentary.
Date: 11/13/16 14:25
The depot definitely has character! Thanks for posting these nuggets.