Before the M602 was built (Eccles Line) question

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Gathursty

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The M602 runs parallel to the Liverpool-Manchester Chat Moss railway for a non-trivial length. Before the M602 was built, what was there beside the railway? Any pictures/diagrams? Was the line four-tracked here?

I was parked on the M602 earlier today which spurred my mind into distraction. :)
 
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kjhskj75

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The M602 runs parallel to the Liverpool-Manchester Chat Moss railway for a non-trivial length. Before the M602 was built, what was there beside the railway? Any pictures/diagrams? Was the line four-tracked here?

I was parked on the M602 earlier today which spurred my mind into distraction. :)

It was four-tracked, but the motorway took much more than just the northern pair. You can see old maps on http://maps.nls.uk/
 

LNW-GW Joint

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Four-tracked to Patricroft, where the line to Wigan via Tyldesley went off to the north west (and to Clifton Jn/Bury to the north east).
There was a big MPD in the triangle at Patricroft.
All hard to believe today.
The slight "kink" to the south in the current line through Patricroft where the LNWR widened the route is the only reminder.
 
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SemaphoreSam

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Actually, the Tyldesley loop left the mainline at Eccles, proceeding Northwest, and the Black Harry line left the mainline at Patricroft, proceeding Northeast. They originally crossed at a position just north of the present day M602; I walked, or paralleled, the Black Harry line from the main to the edge of the M602 (many steel fences block the actual ROW). The Tyldesley loop line ROW is now buried in buildings from Eccles . Once North of the M602 (not easy in itself), I tried to find evidence of where they crossed (on the level in 1866, when a major accident occurred between crossing trains; they subsequently bridged the crossing, anybody know when?).

My interest in this area comes from the Black Harry tunnel to the north, which caved in at one of the access pits after 103 years in 1953; I walked North from the M602, following the ROW, to the scene on Temple Drive, when in April 1953 two houses disappeared (#22 & #24, along with 5 deceased) into the tunnel below. Now there are just empty spaces, where those 2 row houses were, along with the houses not affected. The Branch never re-opened. Sam
 
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