A New Siding


A New Siding

5th June 2019

Shaun Owen

When the directors were discussing what it would take to ‘unlock’ the work in the yard at Spring Village last year the Chairman (I am led to believe) remarked ‘the 3 way point’. Some of us followed Nick Aston down the yard the following weekend and had a play with what point shoes we could lay our hands on to lay out the shape and try to establish what would be required to achieve this. A little later the Permanent Way director came down and measured up what sleepers would be required and took his quote to the Board. He then went away to build the extension on his house!

The recent work removing the track at Doseley has brought some concrete sleepers up the hill to be stacked in the yard. Why stack them up when we could bury them we said! The congestion in the yard now has to be experienced to be believed. Shunting three and four coach trains around on curved track with poor sightlines to extract Dunlop 6 (say) from the shed to be picked up by a Low Loader is taking a lot of time (and Diesel!). The solution, another loading siding. Parallel to Tom road and using some of the Concrete sleepers under the surface, this will allow stock to be parked ready for pickup and to be swapped off the Lorry if a delivery is scheduled at the same time, saving a lot of money. We can still leave the Polar coaches (buck-eyed together) as a unit and don’t have to move whole trains every time we have to move a piece of stock.

The P-way director back from his home improvements and a new team member in the department with the skills and enthusiasm to drive the project forward and we are starting to make headway. The line of the new siding has been paced out and, as usual, we are going at it backwards! Starting at the road end a trench big enough for a Railway line to sit in is being cut down the yard. A small team has removed all the junk and burnt any dead sleepers, tipped over the Platform edge slabs and cleared space around the pallet load of point handles for pickup by the machines. So a few days more and we should be nearly up to the fabled 3-way point! (Which is actually 2 interlaced points, a Left and a Right turnout). All this should enable the stock to be moved out of the old sidings along the fence line and these re laid for the proposed Carriage shed. And the point work hiding under this stock to be used for further extensions to the yard.

Still a lot of work to do putting the ballast in and jacking and packing the rails to the same level as Tom road so don’t be shy! Get down to Spring Village on the P-way weekends for some exercise and fun in the sun. Oh! And I am supposed to say that all this helps us get down to Doseley! Not sure about that but it does help keep access to the line for works trains etc. without having to shift ‘tons of stock’ first.

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