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Old 6th May 2012, 20:58   #271
PR1Berske
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I would love that to happen but it's a bit "ideal world" given the problems detailed above

Another victim to the attitude against railways in times gone by.
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Old 6th May 2012, 23:26   #272
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This line has already lost Miles Platting, Newton Heath and Middleton Junction stations between Manchester and Rochdale as a result of the "rationalisation" of the period in the 1960's and in events since then.
.
Miles Platting lost most of its remaining traffic after local housing on & near Oldham Rd. was demolished, and local industry declined. Whilst I was sad to see it closed, high frequency bus services to the city centre cater adequately for what residual traffic still exists.

Middleton suffered from neglect - a sparse service and several minutes walk from the town centre meant that the rail service found it difficult to compete with slower, but very frequent buses to Manchester, and direct buses to both Oldham & Rochdale.
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Old 7th May 2012, 00:51   #273
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Miles Platting lost most of its remaining traffic after local housing on & near Oldham Rd. was demolished, and local industry declined. Whilst I was sad to see it closed, high frequency bus services to the city centre cater adequately for what residual traffic still exists.

Middleton suffered from neglect - a sparse service and several minutes walk from the town centre meant that the rail service found it difficult to compete with slower, but very frequent buses to Manchester, and direct buses to both Oldham & Rochdale.
I suppose that you could make a direct comparison between Miles Platting station and Ardwick station, in that, as you quite rightly say, much of the local population has moved elsewhere and both of these railway stations are very close to their main railway stations. Both areas still have an amount of light industry, but it is noticeable that Ardwick railway station has still remained open. However, bus provision in both areas is more than adequate. It is noticeable that the Manchester Metrolink will not serve the Miles Platting area, as the route outwards from Manchester takes the route of the former avoiding heavy rail line and this will serve the Monsall area instead.

Middleton station, which I used until its demise in 1964, would now be more useful, noting the new town centre developments that are very near to the former station site, which was used by an office block and associated warehouse the last time that I had cause to visit Middleton about 10 years ago, but past acquaintances do still contact me with information from time to time. I should imagine that a bus ride from Middleton into Manchester, either via Rochdale Road or via Cheetham Hill, would still take quite some time, especially in the peak travel periods.
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Old 7th May 2012, 13:24   #274
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Is the crossover planned to be between the viaduct and the station then, or Manchester side of the station? Sorry, not sure from the thread so far - I'd guessed from comments so far that it was definitely going on the viaduct (as unlikely as that sounded!)

Betwixt staton and viaduct.

Also, to add some real news, the project (detailed and construction) is out to tender as we speak.
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I would be interested if someone could tell this forum when Network Rail or their predecessors last made a structural assessment with regard to the present stage of degradations that has occurred. I think that the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway were involved in the construction of the viaduct.

Since it isn't an operational asset it isn't NR's to inspect or maintain. I'm not even sure it's still in any kind of Railway ownership at all.

It's quite possibly being held together by the Silver Birches ...

It was an L&Y project, and re-opening it to allow Rochdales to access Piccadilly (via Brewery, Philips Park West, Philips Park South and a reinstated Ancoats Junction) was considered in about 2000. However, any thought of this is now dead due to later "through train" ideas, the Hub and the HS2 interim terminus.

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Old 7th May 2012, 22:21   #275
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Does anyone know if any thought has been given to rolling stock for services using the Todmorden curve? The talk seems to be of a completion date for the line at the end of next year, but that's not going to help much unless there's some trains to run the new service, and since I gather from other threads that Northern has no spare stock, something presumably needs to be done...?
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Old 8th May 2012, 19:10   #276
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Does anyone know if any thought has been given to rolling stock for services using the Todmorden curve? The talk seems to be of a completion date for the line at the end of next year, but that's not going to help much unless there's some trains to run the new service, and since I gather from other threads that Northern has no spare stock, something presumably needs to be done...?
I sincerely hope that the matter of rolling stock provision for this proposed new rail service was looked into when this project (which is only part of the total project that includes the regeneration of The Weavers Triangle" in Burnley) was in the examination and scrutiny stage, when the Governmental body responsible for the released funding were making the in-depth analysis of all aspects of the successful grant-monies bid.
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Old 8th May 2012, 19:55   #277
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Middleton station, which I used until its demise in 1964, would now be more useful, noting the new town centre developments that are very near to the former station site, which was used by an office block and associated warehouse the last time that I had cause to visit Middleton about 10 years ago, but past acquaintances do still contact me with information from time to time. I should imagine that a bus ride from Middleton into Manchester, either via Rochdale Road or via Cheetham Hill, would still take quite some time, especially in the peak travel periods.
One of my other interests is buses, and the service 17 bus via Rochdale Road takes around 20 minutes (off-peak), but some morning peak workings towards Manchester are allowed around 30 to 40 minutes. Apart from money, and loss of some small bridges, there would be few problems in reinstating the Middleton branch if anyone had the will to do so, although it might be better used as part of a tramway extended to the town centre, and maybe even to the Langley estate beyond the town centre. With a new bridge over the line at Middleton Junction, it would even be feasible to extend a tramway up Middleton incline to join Metrolink at Oldham Werneth. (Of course, I don't expect this to happen...)
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Old 9th May 2012, 20:34   #278
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It might be better used as part of a tramway extended to the town centre, and maybe even to the Langley estate beyond the town centre. With a new bridge over the line at Middleton Junction, it would even be feasible to extend a tramway up Middleton incline to join Metrolink at Oldham Werneth. (Of course, I don't expect this to happen...)
Whatever direction you go from Middleton to the Langley estate, you will be faced with a very steep incline over a considerable period of line running.

Not exactly "rack and pinion" in its requirements, but something to stretch one's imagination trying to come up with a solution to that particular conundrum.
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Old 13th May 2012, 20:28   #279
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Whatever direction you go from Middleton to the Langley estate, you will be faced with a very steep incline over a considerable period of line running.

Not exactly "rack and pinion" in its requirements, but something to stretch one's imagination trying to come up with a solution to that particular conundrum.
Middleton to Langley is no steeper than parts of the Sheffield tramway.
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Old 13th May 2012, 21:27   #280
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I have consulted all my historical maps of that area of Manchester and at present, the only way to make a Manchester Piccadilly (from your stated use of platform 1) - Ardwick -Miles Platting journey, is to carry on past Ardwick towards Ashburys on the lines at the rear of station, then to reverse to access the line which passes through both the Phillips Park junctions into Miles Platting.

Perhaps you would be so kind as to state the route that you had in mind to enable your service to run in the section from Ardwick to Miles Platting, noting that the Siemens Transpennine Express now occupies much of the former land in that area and is projected to be converted to allow the future electric units to be serviced.

When you make a journey from Manchester Piccadilly to Ardwick at the present time, just before you arrive at Ardwick Station, you will see on the left hand side of the line, the viaduct that in the dim and distant realms of railway history used to provide a through-running route to the area near to Miles Platting. However, the bridge over Blind Lane and Pittbrook Street was removed many years ago and the viaduct remainder has the appearance of a gently curving elevated urban forest. I would be interested if someone could tell this forum when Network Rail or their predecessors last made a structural assessment with regard to the present stage of degradations that has occurred. I think that the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway were involved in the construction of the viaduct.
I have been following this discussion with great interest. The link from Philips Park Junction to Ardwick was opened by the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway as a single track goods line on 20th November 1848, it was opened to regular passenger traffic in 1852. The line was doubled in August 1865. Sadly I don't know when the Ardwick end of line was closed to both Passenger & Goods traffic. Although I do know that by 1970 the closed section was no longer in any use.

However the majority of the line is actually still open from both Philips Park No 1 Junction & Baguley Fold Junction to Midland Junction, the line continues on the old Midland Railway Ardwick Branch until it joins the old Great Central line at Ashburys. The rest of the line is closed completely.

From Midland Juntion, alongside Viaduct Street to Ashton Old Road, both the viaduct and the bridge over Ashton Old Road have been demolished. Beyond Aston Old Road about a fifth of the distance toward Ardwick Juntion a section of viaduct has been leveled to link to large factory car parks. The viaduct continues until it reaches Dainton Street, where the bridge over this street and the link to the line into Piccadilly has been demolished as well.

Paul is quite right the all of the top serfice of the viaduct is cover in trees and bushes, more than likely their roots have been steadily destroying the ingegrity of the viaduct. Some of the arches are still in use for small business.

I feel that the chance of this section of line being reopened are practically NIL. Although the rebuilding the missing bridges and re-ordering the viaduct are possible, the only place any services could go are the old MSLR/GCR platforms at Piccadilly. To do otherwise would cause much more disruption in services crossing the approaches to Piccadilly, this why the Ordsall Curve is being built to reduce this flat crossing of the all of the approach lines to Piccadilly. Much more practical would be upgrading the goods line from Philips Park no.1 Junction & Ashburys to send some services to Victoria Station.

Last edited by lancastrian; 14th May 2012 at 20:21.
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Old 14th May 2012, 08:03   #281
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I thank you for that most historically detailed answer with regard to the viaduct in the Ardwick area, which should also be most useful to the forum member who had suggested the use of that viaduct in his "proposed route".
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Middleton to Langley is no steeper than parts of the Sheffield tramway.
That must be quite steep, as my comment concerned the Wood Street direct link route from Middleton with regard to the steepness involved. I could foresee some operational problems on Langley during periods of heavy snowfall, which does see much drifting occurring owing to it being surrounded by open countryside with nothing really to act as a windblock during snowstorms. Having lived in the Birch and Bowlee area, near to the area in question, I can most certainly personally vouch for the varegies of wind-blown snowdrifts in that area in winter with memories of 1958 and snowdrifts up to roof level there.

Middleton did have quite a good tramway system at one time, with good links to those bordering areas which also had these. There was a booklet published many years ago on this subject.
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Old 19th May 2012, 17:31   #282
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Some pictures take today (not the best of quality as it was dull and I only had my iPad):


Taken from footbridge with my back to Burnley


Taken looking at remains of original curve (quite a bit of vegetation clearance)



Ditto


Ditto


Taken from footbridge looking towards Burnley

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Old 19th May 2012, 21:57   #283
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I have been following this discussion with great interest. The link from Philips Park Junction to Ardwick was opened by the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway as a single track goods line on 20th November 1848, it was opened to regular passenger traffic in 1852. The line was doubled in August 1865. Sadly I don't know when the Ardwick end of line was closed to both Passenger & Goods traffic. Although I do know that by 1970 the closed section was no longer in any use.
Col Cobb gives 1964 as the closure date.
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Old 20th May 2012, 20:42   #284
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Col Cobb gives 1964 as the closure date.
Thanks for that information, it was helpful. It also means that the viaduct has been out of use for 48 years, I very much doubt it could be used without great cost in making it usable, or even demolished and a new one built.
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Old 21st May 2012, 20:54   #285
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Thanks for that information, it was helpful. It also means that the viaduct has been out of use for 48 years, I very much doubt it could be used without great cost in making it usable, or even demolished and a new one built.
This indeed with signify the end of the "hoped-for" route using the Ardwick viaduct, that was put forward in a recent thread by Waverley125.
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