Worcester Shrub Hill railway station

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Worcester Shrub Hill National Rail
Worcester Shrub Hill
Location
Place Worcester
Local authority Worcester
Coordinates 52°11′42″N 2°12′32″W / 52.195°N 2.209°W / 52.195; -2.209Coordinates: 52°11′42″N 2°12′32″W / 52.195°N 2.209°W / 52.195; -2.209
Grid reference SO858551
Operations
Station code WOS
Managed by London Midland
Number of platforms 3
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2004/05  1.356 million
2005/06 Decrease 0.203 million
2006/07 Increase 0.593 million
2007/08 Increase 0.625 million
2008/09 Increase 0.761 million
2009/10 Increase 0.856 million
2010/11 Decrease 0.746 million
2011/12 Increase 0.780 million
2012/13 Increase 0.892 million
2013/14 Increase 0.969 million
History
Original company Oxford, Worcester and Wolverhampton Railway/Midland Railway joint
Pre-grouping Great Western Railway/Midland Railway joint
Post-grouping Great Western Railway/London, Midland and Scottish Railway joint
5 October 1850 (1850-10-05) Station opened
National RailUK railway stations
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Worcester Shrub Hill from Office of Rail Regulation statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
Portal icon UK Railways portal
Up Midland Parcels train in 1959

Worcester Shrub Hill railway station is one of two railway stations serving the city of Worcester in Worcestershire, England. It is managed by London Midland, and it is also served by First Great Western.

The city's other station, Worcester Foregate Street, is situated in the city centre; Shrub Hill is situated to the east.

History[edit]

Signals SH77 and SH78 are two examples of the Western Region's semaphore signals from the old British Rail days.

The first station at Shrub Hill was opened in 1850 being jointly owned by the Oxford, Worcester and Wolverhampton and Midland Railways; until 1852 it was used only as a terminus for the latter's services from Birmingham. The present station building was designed by Edward Wilson and built in 1865. It is a Georgian-style building mainly of engineering brick with stone facings. Originally there was also a train shed which was removed in the 1930s.A survival at the station are the Western Region semaphore signals. The station is served by Cafe Loco which is situated opposite the booking office, at the main entrance.

Railway operations[edit]

The entire station is controlled by Worcester Shrub Hill Signal Box located at the 'London' (south) end of platform 1. The Worcester area is controlled by another two signal boxes at Henwick (west of Foregate Street), and Tunnel Junction to the north of Shrub Hill. Both platform 1 and 2 can be used in either direction, generally trains for Foregate Street use platform one and trains towards Oxford and Cheltenham Spa use platform 2 but this is not in all cases. Platform 3 is a small bay that was used mainly for the former Wessex Trains/Wales & West service towards Cheltenham Spa, as it's a small south facing bay platform its use is limited. Trains leaving Shrub Hill for Foregate Street join a single line that ends near Henwick signal box south of Foregate Street station. This is one of the two single lines through Foregate Street Station.

Near to the station is Worcester TMD which is currently operated by London Midland who also stable trains at various locations around Shrub Hill station. First Great Western also stable some of their DMUs at Worcester TMD. Shrub Hill station is home to London Midland and First Great Western train crew depots. Also to the north of the station behind platform 2 & 3 is a goods yard.

Possible closure plans[edit]

If either of the proposed Worcestershire Parkway Regional Interchanges is built, Shrub Hill station will close.[1] However, it is expected[by whom?] that planned housing growth as a result of the South Worcestershire Joint Core Strategy and Regional Spatial Strategy may result in this decision being changed, as a result of changes in land use around the Shrub Hill area.

Services[edit]

Worcester Shrub Hill is served by London Midland's route from Worcester to Birmingham, via Kidderminster & Stourbridge Junction. This line runs to Birmingham Snow Hill and Birmingham Moor Street, with many of the services on it continuing through to either Whitlocks End or Dorridge.[2] There are also a limited number of trains via Bromsgrove to Birmingham New Street that start or call here, mainly at peak times or in the early morning/late evening. Most through services between Hereford & New Street otherwise run direct from Foregate St to Droitwich Spa to avoid the need for a reversal.

First Great Western operate about a dozen services a day to and from London Paddington, the majority of which are via the Cotswold Line and Oxford.[3] Other services to and from London operate via Cheltenham Spa, the Gloucester/Swindon line (Golden Valley Line) and the Great Western Main Line via Didcot & Reading. FGW run services southwards every two hours to Bristol Temple Meads via Cheltenham and Gloucester,[4] which then mostly continue to either Weymouth or Brighton. FGW also run services via Worcester Foregate Street to Great Malvern and Hereford from Oxford & London.

London Midland's service between Worcester and Gloucester via Ashchurch and Cheltenham to complement the 2-hourly First Great Western service was discontinued at the start of the December 2009 railway timetable due to low passenger usage - however London Midland still operate a single service to Gloucester on Friday nights, departing at 23:46.

Being the bigger of the two stations in Worcester, due to its sidings, Worcester Shrub Hill is often used as stabling point for goods trains and locomotives, as well as an overnight stop for some First Great Western rolling stock.

Waiting room[edit]

On Platform 2b is the old ladies’ waiting room which extends onto the platform. It is a cast-iron frame cast at the Vulcan Iron Works at Worcester. This was a subsidiary of the MacKenzie and Holland signal manufacturing company about 200 yards from Worcester Shrub Hill station . The exterior is decorated with classical pilasters and covered with “majolica” ceramic tiles made by Maw and Company of Broseley.[5]

Maw was originally a Worcester company founded in 1850 when they bought the old Chamberlain tile factory. However in 1852 they moved to Broseley to be nearer their source of clay. In the main they made encaustic tiles rather than the “majolica” ceramic tiles used to decorate the Shrub Hill waiting room.

Wojtczak writes that in 1873 there was Ladies’ Waiting Room Attendant called Mrs Dale who earned 10s and that this was the same rate of pay as a Mrs Spencer who was the office cleaner.[6]

Worcester Locomotive Depot in 1959

It is Grade II* listed and English Heritage placed it on the “Buildings At Risk Register” in 2003. The official records record that the waiting room was added c1880. In 2005 the register records “The cast iron frame is in need of structural repair. The front wall is leaning out and currently shored up. Preliminary investigative work has been carried out, but repair works have been delayed due partly to problem of locating specialist contractors." In April 2005, Network Rail applied for listed building planning consent to restore the waiting room to bring it back into use before the end of 2006. The application gave detail of the work to be carried out including restoration of the cast iron work and the sourcing and replacement of the missing ceramic tiles but as at May 2006 no work had commenced and English Heritage reported that the building should be included on the 2006 “Buildings At Risk Register”.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://archive.thisisworcestershire.co.uk/2005/8/12/370646.html The Worcester News
  2. ^ GB National Rail Timetable 2013-14, Table 71
  3. ^ GB National Rail Timetable 2013-14, Table 126
  4. ^ GB National Rail Timetable 2013-14, Table 123
  5. ^ Richard Morriss The Archaeology of Railways, 1999 Tempus Publishing,Stroud. plate72 p128
  6. ^ Helena Wojtczak "Railwaywomen", Hastings Press,2005 p6 ISBN 1 904 109047
  7. ^ English Heritage Regional Registers (2010) West Midlands: Worcester Retrieved 9 January 2011

Bibliography[edit]

  • Biddle, Gordon (2003). Britain's Historic Railway Buildings. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-866247-5. 
  • Boynton, John & Widdowson, Stephen (2000). Worcester Shrub Hill 150, 1850-2000. Worcester 150. ISBN 0-9522248-8-7. 

External links[edit]

Preceding station National Rail National Rail Following station
Worcester
Foregate Street
  London Midland
Hereford-Birmingham
  Droitwich Spa
Worcester
Foregate Street
  London Midland
Worcester-Birmingham
via Kidderminster
  Droitwich Spa
Worcester
Foregate Street
  First Great Western
Cotswold Line
  Pershore
Worcester
Foregate Street
  First Great Western
Worcester-Bristol
  Ashchurch for
Tewkesbury