M6 Motorway28 Comments
Item #: 29052
Interesting photograph. It looks like a Fairburn tank, and it is on the down Liverpool Exchange line. To the left of the engine is the down loop that stretched from Pemberton Winstanley Coll signal box to Orrell East. The up fast line and up loop are on the opposite side. During steam days the coal trains from Wakefield to Liverpool were stabled on the down loop; the return 'empties' occupied the up loop. These coal trains could spend hours waiting for the road until they were given the signal to take the Pemberton Loop and onwards toward Hindley.
Notice the clean embankments and tidy tracks: a task that was carried out by the proud permanent way gangs.
Workers had pride in the jobs then. British Railways do I just love saying that word, so clean and no fence along the embankments.
Fog hut on the down side ,a plate layer would tail lamp trains in thick fog.
The hut is actually on the 'up' line.
Forgive me Jarvo, but I need to ask, there's four sections of track, two up and two down. the train seems to be on the wrong track??
Which way is this heading?
The engine is in reverse.
Please read my first post. It answers both your questions. The train is going west to Liverpool.
The engine is in reverse.........The engine is in reverse ?.........You haven't been giving Gazza a lift with that sherry by any chance have you Alan ?
No not in reverse otherwise the smoke would be blowing the other way.
Perhaps Barrie remembers which way it's travelling.Looking at the direction of smoke forward.
It really surprises me that so many people posting on here don't read the other posts. Trust me, Alex, the train is heading westwards to Liverpool. If you look above the bridge and through the smoke, you can make out the trees on the Winstanley estate. The train, probably a local from Wigan Wallgate or beyond, should make its next stop at Orrell station a third of a mile or so further on. I rest my case.
I think what people are saying apart from the direction the train is traveling, it must be shoving the rolling stock, because if the loco was going forward it's on the wrong track.
That is correct jarvo the engine is on incline from Pem to Orrell.
A tank engine pushing the carriges in reverse. The train is going away from the camera. Tank locos are good in reverse.
Alan: Read my first post, slowly...
I have read it slowly, Jarvo. It still don't make sense.
According to my photographic record book the time was 10.32 am and it was the Wigan -Liverpool train -. I was standing at the top of the embankment looking towards Wigan. Hope this helps.
Thak you, Barrie. Just to explain briefly again: the down lines (going to Liverpool) the one on the engine's left, is the down loop...On the opposite side, there is the up fast, and the up loop. The loops were for the slower goods trains that were stabled there giving way to the passenger trains. Is that clear enough?
so in this instance the slow lines are on each side of the fast?
Thank you Jarvo.
It's a bit complicated innit Jimmy? Up, down, slow , fast, in, out, ploop, scoop, it's just as well I never worked on the railway.
Today, the scene has altered slightly. The motorway bridge is still there, of course, but both loops have long been lifted. Funny enough, freight trains run again from the spur at Kirkby maybe twice a day. But the long coal trains from Wakefield have long gone, along with the mines that fed them.
Bring freight back on our railways.
As a postscript to this, the quadrupled lines continued going west, after Upholland Tunnel and station, to Ditton; until joining the Liverpool system. Going east, they continued after Crow's Nest Junction at Atherton and on to Walkden and then Manchester. The trains would pass through Victoria and then be banked up Miles Platting to continue onwards over the pennines. Let's have more of these nostalgic photographs. They make this site great. Thank you.
Here here Jarvo.
This train is travelling towards Wigan! Other points to note, there was no way a loco would have been allowed to 'push' a passenger train in service that has more than 3 carriages, and then they were limited to 35mph. The lines here are two loops either side with the running tracks in the centre. The loops were from Winstanley Colliery to Orrell East (just beyond the M6 bridge), and another pair of loops from Ditton Brook to Holland Moss. It was only the main running lines through Orrell, Upholland Tunnel, and Upholland Station