Saturday, 27 November 2010

Grimsby and the railway.

Yesterday I made mention of how the railway line we had travelled over from Newark on Trent to Grimsby had missed the Beeching axe back in the 1960’s. A bit of internet research revealed that since it’s inception back in the 1890’s it has been a very important freight line which has kept it open until today.

The Great Central Railway had utilised the line for the coal trade from South Yorkshire and East Midlands collieries and steel from Scunthorpe mills.The fish trade out of Grimsby would have also been very important before road transport killed this mode of transportation. Later the deep port of Immingham came into being which is still used for the petroleum industry. We did actually pass a tanker train heading back to Immingham with empty tankers.

Barnetby Junction is extraordinary in that it is a large railway junction seemingly out in the middle of nowhere. In the past it did however serve the local village which had a Malt Kiln and the large rural community in transporting cattle. A lot of the old sidings are still in place with two storing old BOC  Liquid Nitrogen tankers. These have been in storage so long that tree’s have grown up between the tankers and will need felling before any of these can move again. The whole junction is dotted with old semaphore signals some of which are still in use.

Our class 153 railcar from Newark North Gate to Grimsby was already full when we left Newark but this service was obviously the local village school run because we stopped at several small stations which looked very much as they would have 50 or 60 years ago. At these rural outposts we picked up more children who eventually alighted at Lincoln.

The return journey was more enjoyable as we travelled on a 3 car class 185 where there were more seats available. This time we travelled on a different line from Barnetby junction which took us to Doncaster where we changed trains for Peterborough. Travelling over this whole section of the British rail network was very interesting especially where the track work was still in the old 60 feet lengths and we got the old clickety clack of the wheels that would have been familiar to train travellers before long length rail was invented. With the original station buildings and line side effects it was a bit like a time warp.


Paul (from Waterway Routes) said...

They are 60 foot lengths - and counting the number of joints in 36 seconds gives your speed in mph.

Derek and Dot said...

Thanks for that Paul, alteration to blog has now been made.