New TV series: The Architecture the Railways Built

Ashley Hill

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Wolferton signal box was stated as being unique,in as much it was joined to an adjacent building. IIRC Knaresborough box is also attached to a building ,there may be (have been) others. Would like to have spent more time in 55 Broadway,it is a fascinating building that 20mins did not do justice to.
 
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eastwestdivide

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...My only minor complaint, common to many documentaries, is the way the editor (or producer or director?) splits each separate location into two or three segments spread through the programme, rather than completing one before moving to the next. I assume it's done to keep you watching as long as possible, but I find it mildly irritating...
Were they listening! Last night’s episode (Helsinki etc) wasn’t sliced up like that.
 

edwin_m

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Wolferton signal box was stated as being unique,in as much it was joined to an adjacent building. IIRC Knaresborough box is also attached to a building ,there may be (have been) others. Would like to have spent more time in 55 Broadway,it is a fascinating building that 20mins did not do justice to.
There was one somewhere in Scotland (West Highland I think) where the box was combined with the houses for the day and night signalmen. It's still there with the box now an extension to the houses. Woolferton may still be unique in being attached to a non-railway building (there are or were many boxes within or attached to station buildings).

I think @timmydunn also mentioned that passengers for Wolferton (the royal ones at least) would have come from St Pancras. Surely, being a Great Eastern route, that would have been Liverpool Street? I'll add that this is the only possible innaccuracy I've noticed in the series so far!
 

eastwestdivide

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Surely, being a Great Eastern route, that would have been Liverpool Street
I wondered about that too, but Wikipedia at
says
Royal trains bound for Wolferton departed from St. Pancras station (the City being traditionally barred to Royalty except on special occasions) and was routed via Tottenham to the Great Eastern Railway's Cambridge line. Typically, a royal train departed St Pancras at 12.20pm, arriving at King's Lynn at 2.32pm, before leaving three minutes later for the ten-minute journey to Wolferton.
with a reference to
R. S. Joby (1985). Forgotten Railways: Vol. 7 East Anglia. Newton Abbott, Devon: David & Charles

There’s also a list of royal journeys available from the NRM at
listing some St P and KX trips to/from Wolferton
 
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edwin_m

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I wondered about that too, but Wikipedia at
says

with a reference to
R. S. Joby (1985). Forgotten Railways: Vol. 7 East Anglia. Newton Abbott, Devon: David & Charles

There’s also a list of royal journeys available from the NRM at
listing asome St P and KX trips to/from Wolferton
Concern fully addressed! Many thanks.
 

DelW

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Were they listening! Last night’s episode (Helsinki etc) wasn’t sliced up like that.
I don't think I can claim the credit :lol:

One thing I wondered about from last night's episode - Barmouth bridge was stated as being the longest timber viaduct in Wales. Is there a longer one in England or Scotland? I'd have thought it might well be the longest in Britain?
 

FQTV

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Would like to have spent more time in 55 Broadway,it is a fascinating building that 20mins did not do justice to.

In the not too distant future, you'll be allowed to spend as much time as you like (or your finances allow) in 55 Broadway, as it's to become a hotel following TfL's sale of a 150 year lease on the property.
 

timmydunn

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On qns above -
1. Re: longest wooden bridge - kept to "wales" for simplicity etc.
2. alas, sorry that you don't like the intercutting of stories - it's done for good reasons. not really for me to debate on here - and i won't - that is not my role. but if that's the only minor issue a few people have, then great!
3. Yes, STP not LST because royals are barred technically from the square mile. I think that bit didn't quite make the final edit but good spot, and we had a long chat about that with Andrew on site. Plus also a long chat with a former fireman on the route and his memories of working it. Just can't fit everything in we'd like! had the full day there filming and talking about aspects of the station, its design and its operation.

Roll on next week (9 of 10) and looking at some of the often-overlooked buildings of shildon. i am sure there will be some debate around "oldest" "first" etc but then there always is. ;)
 

edwin_m

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3. Yes, STP not LST because royals are barred technically from the square mile. I think that bit didn't quite make the final edit but good spot, and we had a long chat about that with Andrew on site. Plus also a long chat with a former fireman on the route and his memories of working it. Just can't fit everything in we'd like! had the full day there filming and talking about aspects of the station, its design and its operation.
Thanks for engaging with us, and in a wider sense for the series as a whole. I guess it might have been better for the edited version to say something like "Royal trains ran from St Pancras" rather than what it actually said - I don't remember the exact words but they were probably intended at the time to remind viewers of the longer story that they should have just heard but ended up being cut out.

Perhaps some of the ornamentation at Woolferton was the GER trying to get back at the Midland by showing they could do something just as ornate as St Pancras, albeit on a rather smaller scale!
 

Ralph Ayres

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Hi folks - tonight on The Architecture The Railways Built at 8pm on TV, it's a varied bunch of interesting stuff:
  • Wolferton "royal" station in Norfolk - closed in 1969, for a while a very good railway museum which you may have visited, but now beautifully restored as a private home and semi-open garden - we got rare permission to film inside, and get into the converted GER signal box too
  • 55 Broadway - London Transport's former HQ at St James's's's Park - I think we were the last film crew in as it's now been sold
  • Barmouth Bridge (a brief history of - and showing how it's maintained by Network Rail)
  • Helsinki station - including a v rare visit into the massive clock tower. Very kind of the VR Group, Finnish Railways, to let us go up there.

Will also be available to catch-up online here: https://uktvplay.uktv.co.uk/shows/the-architecture-the-railways-built/watch-online/
Is it my imagination Tim, or did you miss out on visiting some of the locations in person? I don't remember seeing you at all in the Helsinki segment or one of the viaducts in a previous episode, though the voice-over cleverly makes it seem as though you are there.

(and you really don't like heights, do you? We've been playing "spot how hard he's gripping the handrail" for every rooftop/tower balcony scene!)
 

eastwestdivide

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Of interest, what was the route across from St Pancras, and why from there rather than King's Cross?
In the Wiki article quoted above, it says via Tottenham, so I'd suggest St P, turn right at Kentish Town (curve not there any more), over part of what's now the GOBLIN line to S Tottenham, then turn left onto the GE at Tottenham Hale and away via Cheshunt to KL and Wolferton.
 

Peter Mugridge

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In the Wiki article quoted above, it says via Tottenham, so I'd suggest St P, turn right at Kentish Town (curve not there any more), over part of what's now the GOBLIN line to S Tottenham, then turn left onto the GE at Tottenham Hale and away via Cheshunt to KL and Wolferton.

Ah... I'd forgotten there was once a curve directly to the right from St Pancras.
 

edwin_m

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Ah... I'd forgotten there was once a curve directly to the right from St Pancras.
I was thinking initially of Leicester than the M&GN with a complicated transfer at Lynn, but I agree something via Tottenham would be more sensible. It would even have passed the infamous Junction Road Junction.
 

Crossover

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Have only caught a couple of them and it was by accident (started with the one which had the former station at Castle Howard) so will have to go back and watch the rest. Very interesting series and well put together.

Would love to visit the box at Shrewsbury!
 

ashkeba

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Why was Helsinki subtitled on-screen? The guide was easier to understand than some other guests so it just seemed insulting. Yesterday is a digital channel so the SUB button is always there if wanted.
 

bussnapperwm

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I must admit my mother, who is no way into trains, has been enjoying this series more than the "sensationalised" Channel 5 rail programs that's been on recently.

It even kicked off the age old debate on the family Zoom over the pronunciation of Shrewsbury (half the extended family call it one way compared to the other!)
 

timmydunn

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There was one somewhere in Scotland (West Highland I think) where the box was combined with the houses for the day and night signalmen. It's still there with the box now an extension to the houses. Woolferton may still be unique in being attached to a non-railway building (there are or were many boxes within or attached to station buildings).

Hi Edwin/Ashley. Wolferton is indeed - as far as I could find in long research - unique in as much that it is attached to non-railway dwellings, and especially so that it was moved from its original position to become part of the terrace.

Hi Ashkeba.
Re: Helsinki. It is not my position to debate production style, so please do reach out to the ace team at Brown Bob Productions with any comments or questions.
 

Mcr Warrior

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Next week (Tuesday 23rd June 2020, 8.00 p.m) Mr. Dunn is off to the North East to visit the Stockton and Darlington Railway.
 

Mcr Warrior

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Is it my imagination Tim, or did you miss out on visiting some of the locations in person? I don't remember seeing you at all in the Helsinki segment or one of the viaducts in a previous episode, though the voice-over cleverly makes it seem as though you are there.
Don't think that Tim was at Barmouth Bridge either. Just did the voice over for that segment of the programme. Such is the magic of modern-day television. ;)
 

timmydunn

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Magic! ;)

This week, again an eclectic mix of stuff. A
1. Shildon: A couple of Stockton & Darlington Rly-based things and the Institute.
2. Skerne Bridge, Darlington.
3. Stockholm Metro!
4. Chappel Viaduct!
5. Hitachi facility at Newton Aycliffe. Not my first time there by any stretch, but was fun to see the Azumas u/c and to understand the kind of space and processes required for assembly. See traverser, below.


19 hitachi traverser.jpg
 

Envoy

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I found the ‘piano’ music in today’s programme - especially when covering the Hitachi plant - to be most annoying. Would have been better with no music.
 

timmydunn

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Last episode tonight!
  • Swindon's Railway Village - the Hydro baths, the Medical Fund, the workers' cottages
  • Jubilee line extension stations (Westminster, Southwark etc
  • Milano Centrale - a rather darker past than some might realise.

It's been a smashing project to work on. The stars really are the crews who researched and organised it, and the 35+ contributors who gave their time, voices and knowledge so generously so that the rest of us might learn and enjoy.

Trailer is here: https://twitter.com/MrTimDunn/status/1277860739240415232

Cheers all
 

davetheguard

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Last episode tonight!
  • Swindon's Railway Village - the Hydro baths, the Medical Fund, the workers' cottages
  • Jubilee line extension stations (Westminster, Southwark etc
  • Milano Centrale - a rather darker past than some might realise.

It's been a smashing project to work on. The stars really are the crews who researched and organised it, and the 35+ contributors who gave their time, voices and knowledge so generously so that the rest of us might learn and enjoy.

Trailer is here: https://twitter.com/MrTimDunn/status/1277860739240415232

Cheers all

Hopefully, it will have been successful enough for a second series; I've found it hugely enjoyable. I'm sure we could all nominate a station we'd like to see considered for inclusion in any future series: can I start the ball rolling with Antwerpen Centraal & the small but perfectly formed station of Battle in Sussex?

By the way, Tim, do you know of any plans for a DVD release of the original series?
 

DelW

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Hopefully, it will have been successful enough for a second series; I've found it hugely enjoyable. I'm sure we could all nominate a station we'd like to see considered for inclusion in any future series: can I start the ball rolling with Antwerpen Centraal & the small but perfectly formed station of Battle in Sussex?

By the way, Tim, do you know of any plans for a DVD release of the original series?
I'd second that :D

Most railway programmes that I watch on mainstream TV cover subjects which I largely know about already, but Tim's series introduced me to quite a few buildings and other structures and locations of which I knew little or nothing. All three of last night's subjects were fascinating.

I'm sure there are some more quirky and lesser known locations that Tim can hunt out!
 

ashkeba

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A great series and a good show to finish.

First five episodes are repeated 1pm to 6pm on Sunday. I expect the final five next Sunday.
 

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