Blakesley railway station

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Blakesley
Blakesley Station 1831195 943e6a72.jpg
Remains of the station in 1967
Location
Place Blakesley
Area South Northamptonshire
Grid reference SP624499
Operations
Original company East and West Junction Railway
Pre-grouping Stratford-upon-Avon and Midland Junction Railway
Post-grouping London, Midland and Scottish Railway
London Midland Region of British Railways
Platforms 2
History
1 July 1873[1] Opened
1 August 1877 Closed
22 February 1885 Reopened
7 April 1952 Closed to passengers
3 February 1962[2] Goods facilities withdrawn
Disused railway stations in the United Kingdom
Closed railway stations in Britain
A B C D–F G H–J K–L M–O P–R S T–V W–Z
170433 at Edinburgh Waverley.JPG UK Railways portal

Blakesley was a railway station on the Stratford-upon-Avon and Midland Junction Railway (SMJ) which served the Northamptonshire village of Blakesley between 1873 and 1962. It was linked to nearby Blakesley Hall by a miniature railway which ran from a terminal adjacent to the station.

History[edit]

A line from Greens Norton junction near Towcester to Stratford-upon-Avon and the junction with the Great Western Railway's Honeybourne branch line was first authorised in June 1864, but due to a lack of funds it took a further nine years for the line, built by the East and West Junction Railway, to be fully open to traffic.[3] A station was opened at Blakesley, a Northamptonshire village 8.5 miles (13.7 km) from Blisworth, with two platforms enclosing the running line as well as a loop line which also served as a goods siding. A signal box was located between the east end of the down platform and the loading dock, and to the west a road overbridge carried Blakesley High Street over the line. The station buildings, a one-storey brick building, were demolished by 1952 leaving the station as little more than a halt.[4] Passenger services were withdrawn later that year, with goods continuing for a further ten years.

Blakesley station was linked to nearby Blakesley Hall by a 15 inches (380 mm) gauge which ran from a terminal located to the west of the station at the rear of the down platform.[5] The railway conveyed coal, farm supplies and guests to the Hall over a distance of 0.75 miles (1.21 km). It was opened in 1903 by the owner of Blakesley Hall, Charles Bartholomew, a Yorkshire colliery owner and shareholder in the East and West Junction Railway. Two Cagney 4-4-0 locomotives and rolling stock were obtained from the United States. The miniature railway, which was fully signalled using Sykes electric banner signals, was particularly popular on Blakesley Fete days.[6] Following Bartholomew's death in 1919, his widow allowed the line to remain and be used by tourists on special occasions. The track was lifted in 1940 after being sold to an estate in Yorkshire.[7]

Routes[edit]

A 1911 Railway Clearing House map of railways in the vicinity of Blakesley
Preceding station Disused railways Following station
Morton Pinkney   SMJR
East and West Junction Railway
  Towcester

Present day[edit]

Nothing remains of the station. A modern bungalow has been across the trackbed and blocks the eastern side of the High Street overbridge.[8] A derelict Blakesley Hall was demolished in 1957, but one of the locomotives, a 4-4-4 tank engine known as "Blacolvesley" and designed by Henry Greenly, was used at a miniature railway in Haswell Lodge in County Durham,[9] and is now with the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Butt, R.V.J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations, Patrick Stephens Ltd, Sparkford, ISBN 1-85260-508-1, p. 37.
  2. ^ Clinker, C.R. (October 1978). Clinker's Register of Closed Passenger Stations and Goods Depots in England, Scotland and Wales 1830-1977. Bristol: Avon-AngliA Publications & Services. p. 14. ISBN 0-905466-19-5. 
  3. ^ Dunn, J.M. (1977). The Stratford & Midland Junction Railway. Blandford, Dorset: The Oakwood Press. p. 6. ISBN 0-85361-036-3. 
  4. ^ Riley, R.C.; Simpson, B. (1999). A History of the Stratford-upon-Avon & Midland Junction Railway. Witney, Oxon: Lamplight Publications. p. 78. ISBN 978-1-899246-20-5. 
  5. ^ Davies, R.; Grant, M.D. (1984). Forgotten Railways: Chilterns and Cotswolds. Newton Abbot, Devon: David St John Thomas. p. 136. ISBN 0-946537-07-0. 
  6. ^ Jordan, Arthur (1982). The Stratford-upon-Avon and Midland Junction Railway: the Shakespeare route. Headington, Oxford: Oxford Railway Pub. Co. p. 36. ISBN 978-0-86093-131-7. 
  7. ^ Kingscott, Geoffrey (2008). Lost Railways of Northamptonshire (Lost Railways Series). Newbury, Berkshire: Countryside Books. p. 114. ISBN 978-1-84674-108-1. 
  8. ^ Kingscott, G., p. 115.
  9. ^ Riley, R.C. and Simpson, B., p. 78.

Coordinates: 52°08′39″N 1°05′20″W / 52.144033°N 1.088939°W / 52.144033; -1.088939