mothballed and disused lines in east anglia?

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MCW

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as in recent ones.

I take a great interest in them :D

the thread regarding disused crossings got me started. the A47 crossing mentioned there has been crossed a few times before by myself, whilst the track was still in place. anyone got any info on all the little branch lines which got mothballed or taken up in the last twenty or so years?

cheers :D
 
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MCW

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St Ives Branch, where not Guided Busway, and Wisbech Branch spring to mind.
thanks will look them up :)

I follow them with google maps if i can.

I know its not EA but I just discovered that the Blaenau FFestiniog line to bala still exists..... as in the track is still there.

Mothballed?:idea:
 

PaulLothian

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thanks will look them up :)

I follow them with google maps if i can.

I know its not EA but I just discovered that the Blaenau FFestiniog line to bala still exists..... as in the track is still there.

Mothballed?:idea:
This line has only gone for many years as far as Llyn Trawsfynydd, where there was a railhead for moving equipment to/from the nuclear power station. Very overgrown when I passed last summer.
 

D365

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St Ives Branch, where not Guided Busway, and Wisbech Branch spring to mind.
Yep, the "Cambridge & St. Ives Branch" immediately springs to mind. The Cambridge to St. Ives section is now used by the [Mis]Guided Bus[t]way, although there was a leaflet from June 1994 proposing to re-open the railway.

From St. Ives, the line split into three branches; most of the former trackbed around the town is used by the A1096 bypass. The first branch took the line to Godmanchester (my hometown) and Huntingdon. The trackbed leading up to Godmanchester is intact, albeit with a number of rabbit holes. The station and Great Ouse bridges, however, have made way for the A14 (former A604) and a car park which was only filled by the Olympic Torch relay! The awkwardness of getting around St. Ives and Huntingdon is what precludes the busway or a railway line from being extended.

Second line was to March station, third looped back to the Fen Line before Ely. Both of these stations are open, although March only has two platforms, down from a high of seven.

The Bramely Line to Wisbech is another closed line, although it is planned to be rebuilt and re-opened by the Bramley Line Heritage Railway Trust. I can't remember what the state is of the level crossing on the A47 though, just before Wisbech.
 

LE Greys

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There's the Middleton Towers branch from King's Lynn, the last stub of the line to Swafham and Dereham. It might still be in use as a mineral extraction line (there's a big sand pit there) but it mostly seems to be unused.

Of course, the line to Dereham would have been mothballed until recently.
 

eastdyke

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Mid-Norfolk Railway extension Dereham - Fakenham.

Part undergoing restoration now (Dereham to County School) and part protected from development (County School - Fakenham).
 

chappers

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What about the Barrington Light Railway, leaving the main line London side of Foxton? Looks pretty mothballed - but I have no idea if it is still used or indeed even still intact!
 

Squaddie

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I know its not EA but I just discovered that the Blaenau FFestiniog line to bala still exists..... as in the track is still there.
As PaulLothian said, this line was in use as far as Trawsfynydd until relatively recently and much of the track is still in situ. Beyond Trawsfynydd, however, there is little evidence of the railway line: some of the original trackbed is now beneath the waters of Llyn Celyn, and other sections have been obliterated by road-widening schemes.
 

MCW

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As PaulLothian said, this line was in use as far as Trawsfynydd until relatively recently and much of the track is still in situ. Beyond Trawsfynydd, however, there is little evidence of the railway line: some of the original trackbed is now beneath the waters of Llyn Celyn, and other sections have been obliterated by road-widening schemes.
Yes It was late when i found the information about that.

still interesting though in all senses :D

Will have a look at those lines everyone has mentioned
 

LE Greys

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Is still in stitu and see's an hourly service even on Sundays! Can you elaborate?
Just had a quick look along there on overhead imagery. There's plenty of evidence of the old Mundsley line remaining, plus the approach to Cromer High and the west curve at what I think is Cromer Beach Junction. No sign of any rails, though.
 

transportphoto

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Just had a quick look along there on overhead imagery. There's plenty of evidence of the old Mundsley line remaining, plus the approach to Cromer High and the west curve at what I think is Cromer Beach Junction. No sign of any rails, though.
Ahhh.. that was long before my time!
 

WestCountry

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What about the Barrington Light Railway, leaving the main line London side of Foxton? Looks pretty mothballed - but I have no idea if it is still used or indeed even still intact!
I wandered down to have a look at it a few weeks ago - still looks fully intact, track not in too bad a state either. The cement works has closed though, and there's a big concrete block stuck across the line where it enters the plant. There's a 4ft bank of mud/gravel on the Foxton side of the level crossing by the plant too, presumably to stop people trying to drive down the line?
 

LE Greys

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I wandered down to have a look at it a few weeks ago - still looks fully intact, track not in too bad a state either. The cement works has closed though, and there's a big concrete block stuck across the line where it enters the plant. There's a 4ft bank of mud/gravel on the Foxton side of the level crossing by the plant too, presumably to stop people trying to drive down the line?
Sounds like a useful southward diversion for the Varsity Line, to avoid bits of busway and the observatory. The junction would need speeding up, though.
 

Penmorfa

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As PaulLothian said, this line was in use as far as Trawsfynydd until relatively recently and much of the track is still in situ. Beyond Trawsfynydd, however, there is little evidence of the railway line: some of the original trackbed is now beneath the waters of Llyn Celyn, and other sections have been obliterated by road-widening schemes.
The line closed as long ago as October 17th 1998, there are plans to 'reopen' it as a Velorail line, if you fancy a pedal through wonderful scenery!

http://www.penmorfa.com/Conwy/seven.htm
 
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I wandered down to have a look at it a few weeks ago - still looks fully intact, track not in too bad a state either. The cement works has closed though, and there's a big concrete block stuck across the line where it enters the plant. There's a 4ft bank of mud/gravel on the Foxton side of the level crossing by the plant too, presumably to stop people trying to drive down the line?
I live just a couple of miles from Foxton, walked some of the line a week ago, appears to be in reasonable condition, there may be a rumour that it may be reopend when the old works is demolished to fill the quarry with spoil from Cross Rail.
 

Pen Mill

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Same subject , different slant.
It's too late to reverse all the mayhem of the track-lifting of the 60s but does anyone know how much it costs to mothball a line ? cost per mile of single track and how much to bring it back into play ?

I know pieces of string spring to mind but it crosses my mind that re-instating a line is a minimal cost as compared to building new. A cost that could be carried by NR and charged as a small premium on access charges.

Yes I'm completely mad but I'd like to see a scenario where track lifting is forbidden !
 

Ploughman

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The biggest saving would come from the fact that the line is in situ so Planning costs etc would be reduced.
However it would be more than likely that the whole of the rails, sleepers and ballast would need to be replaced anyway not forgetting any signalling systems.
 

Bald Rick

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Look at the Ebbw Vale branch as a good barometer. It was a freight only line (with little / no traffic for years), and then brought into passenger use. If you find the official cost of reinstatement, you may wish to take it with a pinch of salt.
 

jopsuk

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The Alloa line hadn't seen a train in years as far as I know before it was opened- the last regular freight (mollasses to Menstrie) ended in the mid nineties. The entire route was completely relaid before it reopened; the track bed was pretty much rebuilt from scratch
 

jamesontheroad

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There's the Middleton Towers branch from King's Lynn, the last stub of the line to Swafham and Dereham. It might still be in use as a mineral extraction line (there's a big sand pit there) but it mostly seems to be unused.
Middleton Towers still sees some freight: it's active but I couldn't tell you how often.

I grew up in the Watton / Swaffham area and I'm convinced that at some point my childhood (eighties/nineties) I crossed a very overgrown stretch of track somewhere on the Thetford - Swaffham line, which closed with Beeching. It may not be there now, but I'm afraid I can't suggest where it was... too many hazy summer days spent exploring the countryside by bike.
 
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Second line was to March station, third looped back to the Fen Line before Ely. Both of these stations are open, although March only has two platforms, down from a high of seven.

The Bramely Line to Wisbech is another closed line, although it is planned to be rebuilt and re-opened by the Bramley Line Heritage Railway Trust. I can't remember what the state is of the level crossing on the A47 though, just before Wisbech.
Thought March only used to have 6 not seven!

Regarding the Bramley Line, the crossing over the A47 has been removed again earlier this year, the track bed is all overgrown again and it doesn't look like it will ever reopen,

From the Bramley Line Trust aspect it has been quiet over the last 10 months, I was reading online last night they have chucked the towel in

The council are debating whether to buy the track bed or invest in it but again, just talk, which crops up every couple of months, someone from NR has said it will cost too much to open as it needs an expensive bridge over the A47 crossing, which is a load of tosh, all they need is to put in a 40mph limit within range of the crossing and rubble strips, really no different type of crossing or risk to that of the one on the A10 at Littleport

Reason NR don't want the line reopened as the trains have to somewhere to be viable, either Peterborough or Ely, as the Ely to Peterborough line is so congested at the moment and only going to get worse, it's not viable for the trains to run shuttle between Wisbech and March then back again as the Driver and Guard will end up waiting around March station 75% of their shift

Another reason they don't want to open it is because the track needs relaying from start to finish and NR don't have the staff to do it as they are all currently working on other money saving projects like the resignalling on the Breckland Line, the new stations at Cambridge and Peterborough etc

NR can this year go down there and lift the remaining track for good should they wish and the line will be gone forever, when and if they do this will be anyones guess bearing in mind the other projects they have on the go and they have to spend time clearing vegetation to get to the track, having said that they are sick of the topic, it's been ongoing for the last ten years and won't go away, so they might lift the line sooner rather than later :cry:
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Middleton Towers still sees some freight: it's active but I couldn't tell you how often.
Not forgetting The Royal Train too, yes The Royal Train has been down there twice within the last month, last time was a coupe of weeks ago at 8am in the morning and returned half an hour later, getting back to the freight there is a daily one operated on weekday mornings by Schenker sometimes two, then on a Tuesday, Thursday afternoon and Saturday morning another one operated by Freightliner, usually had a Class 66 on the front
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
There's the Middleton Towers branch from King's Lynn, the last stub of the line to Swafham and Dereham. It might still be in use as a mineral extraction line (there's a big sand pit there) but it mostly seems to be unused.

Of course, the line to Dereham would have been mothballed until recently.
No Sand Pit at Middleton Towers, it's a rail transfer site, basically what happens is sand is bought to the site regular throughout the day by dumper lorries within a 20 mile radius of Middleton Towers where it is the transferred to train
 

Firesprite

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someone from NR has said it will cost too much to open as it needs an expensive bridge over the A47 crossing,
it's not viable for the trains to run shuttle between Wisbech and March then back again as the Driver and Guard will end up waiting around March station 75% of their shift
Actual it was a county councilor who made that claim, I remember reading it
in the Wisbech Standard. He claimed that the bridge was needed as without
it, There would be long tailbacks on the A47. He also claimed that no one
would use the train as the station site was not within 5 minutes of the town
centre.
As for a shuttle service I believe that the crew would actual would be working most of the time.

40 mile per hour line speed would give a journey time of 12 minutes
plus 2 minutes per each station on route (Coldham, Retail Park) with
a 10 minute turnaround at each end.

There currently two bus routes between March and Wisbech, both of
which take 40 minutes on average to cover the eight miles. The buses
start to late and finish to early and are aimed at bus pass holders.
 
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