Northwich Station Roof Collapse - 18/05/2021

mainframe444

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This from the MEN…..


Major disruption affecting Manchester trains after station roof collapses
https://www.manchestereveningnews.c...sruption-affecting-manchester-trains-20621919

“There are major disruptions to trains running between Manchester and Chester after part of the roof at Northwich station collapsed on to the platform.

Long delays and cancellations have been reported after part of the roof came down at the station this morning, Cheshire Live reports.

As a result, trains between Manchester Piccadilly and Chester have been cancelled or delayed by up to 40 minutes, with disruption expected to last until the end of the day.”
 
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yorksrob

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From the video, it's hard to see what's actually collapsed.

The platform canopy looks more or less intact. Is it part of the wall that's collapsed ?
 

Mcr Warrior

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From the video, it's hard to see what's actually collapsed.

The platform canopy looks more or less intact. Is it part of the wall that's collapsed ?
Possibly some masonry from the adjacent station building has come down, crashing through part of the canopy (you can very briefly see daylight through the canopy roof on the video clip when the camera pans up) and everything ending up on the Manchester bound platform.

Could have been rather nasty!
 

yorksrob

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Possibly some masonry from the adjacent station building has come down, crashing through part of the canopy and everything ending up on the Manchester bound platform.

Ah cheers.

Doesn't sound like anything that can't be repaired.
 

peters

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From the video, it's hard to see what's actually collapsed.

The platform canopy looks more or less intact. Is it part of the wall that's collapsed ?

Top left hand side 10 seconds in shows a missing section of roof.

The building to the left of the canopy is the original station building dating from the 1800s, part of it is used as the ticket office and the rest is used as a local 'work zone' i.e. a support centre for the unemployed.
 

peters

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The Northwich Guardian has some more pictures:





 

Mcr Warrior

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Quite possibly a growing problem! :rolleyes:

A few folk already having a go at Northern about this incident!
 

zwk500

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Quite possibly a growing problem! :rolleyes:
Nice.
A few folk already having a go at Northern about this incident!
Well they do manage the station, and it could quite easily have been very nasty as you yourself pointed out upthread. If they've failed to undertake rather basic maintenance (I stress that at this point we don't know for sure why the wall collapsed) then quite rightly they should have an earful for it!
 

WesternLancer

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Nice.

Well they do manage the station, and it could quite easily have been very nasty as you yourself pointed out upthread. If they've failed to undertake rather basic maintenance (I stress that at this point we don't know for sure why the wall collapsed) then quite rightly they should have an earful for it!
Isn't it NR's responsibility for repairs when above upper canopy stanchion height at stations? I note often seeing TOC colours / freshish paint up to upper canopy support level or about 10' off ground, then old paint not redone for some time above that level.
 

Geeves

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This is what happens when it takes 459 meetings, 5 mission statements and 600 tone crane to get someone up there to remove a tree
 

Geeves

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What, it becomes acceptable to risk lives?

Lives were put at risk today in a much more serious way.

I am not saying the staff up there shouldn't be working in safe way, I am saying the process to get them there is a nightmare.
 

peters

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I wonder if this will mean in the first instance services will resume not calling at Northwich, possibly using the line furthest away from the building usually used by freight.

Fortunately, it looks like Network Rail are permitting services to turnaround at Plumley now so the entire Hale to Chester section isn't closed. I hope Northern have planned a suitable number of replacement buses to get the school children home from Greenbank.

Northern are saying the pick up point for replacement buses in Northwich is Tescos not the station car park as normal, so obviously that's currently out of bounds. I wonder if any cars parked in it have been damaged?

Lives were put at risk today in a much more serious way.

Indeed and if it had happened at just after the 15:33 train to Manchester had stopped there then could have been getting on for 200 children injured or worse.
 

yorksrob

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I hope we have a proper restoration of the building, including the canopy.
 

WesternLancer

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I hope we have a proper restoration of the building, including the canopy.
Yes. Does not seem to be Listed so there is the potential not to re-instate 'as was' - I hope they do the right thing by it. Maybe the Railway Heritage Trust can help - they do great work IMHO.

Yes. Network Rail is responsible for maintenance and repair at that height.
Thanks for confirming my own thoughts Dave.
 

yorksrob

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Yes. Does not seem to be Listed so there is the potential not to re-instate 'as was' - I hope they do the right thing by it. Maybe the Railway Heritage Trust can help - they do great work IMHO.
They certainly do.

And it's a building which seems to be well used, which is half the battle.
 

peters

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Yes. Does not seem to be Listed so there is the potential not to re-instate 'as was' - I hope they do the right thing by it. Maybe the Railway Heritage Trust can help - they do great work IMHO.

Maybe they could improve the canopy without destroying the heritage. Having half of it sloping towards the station building wasn't ideal and it's also been a magnet for pigeons, which have reduced since they put up netting but that hasn't stopped them all and has led to complaints from some about the netting trapping pigeons.

And it's a building which seems to be well used, which is half the battle.

The issue might be if it's deemed unsafe for the work zone to remain in the part of the building Northern don't use then there's plenty of vacant buildings in Northwich which the work zone could move to instead and then would it move back once the building work is completed?
 

Committee man

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Hmmm, I wonder how that might have happened....
Google Streetview from Middlewich Rd Northwich, England
Thanks for the street view image.
Looking closely at it, it appears (to my eye at least) that the gable end nearest the camera is leaning towards the platform/canopy, compared with the the gable end furthest from the camera although I admit it might just be the camera angle. There is also a gap between the top of the gable end the first ridge tile, as if it is moving away from the roof line, something not seen on the other gable but, again that could just be the camera angle.
Not certain what effect, if any, the tree has had on this, cant have helped though I don't suppose.
Lucky no one was killed, almost certain to have been if they were standing under it.
 

Peter Mugridge

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Lots of people have been warning about buddleia growth on walls and bridges for several years now.

It is fortunate that nobody was under that when it came down.

It is imperative that the problem of roots in masonry is tackled as a priority.
 

peters

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Lots of people have been warning about buddleia growth on walls and bridges for several years now.

It is fortunate that nobody was under that when it came down.

It is imperative that the problem of roots in masonry is tackled as a priority.

There's smaller examples of this on the wall between the Chester bound platform at Knutsford and the A537 as well (the platform side.) If that wall collapses then not only would the train line close but the main road route between Macclesfield and Warrington would close as well.

The latest from Network Rail is the cause of the collapse is still under investigation.
 

WesternLancer

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This is what happens when it takes 459 meetings, 5 mission statements and 600 tone crane to get someone up there to remove a tree
Yet I bet there are fully completed risk assessment documents and all sorts of other paperwork complete on file somewhere....
Just no one to actually go and get up there (safely) and remove offending vegetation. Not just on the railway either - all sorts of other public buildings often almost as bad.
 

notlob.divad

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There is also a gap between the top of the gable end the first ridge tile, as if it is moving away from the roof line, something not seen on the other gable but, again that could just be the camera angle.
Well looking back through the previous images as crossover mentioned, that gap does not appear to be evident 2 years previously, nor in any of the other previous images. I agree that camera angles can do funny things, particularly when images are pieced together from a moving vehicle.

Another point of note, is that the bush/tree in question, was significantly more filled out in the previous photograph (May 2018) than in the most recent (Nov 2020) I posted above. Now there is clearly an early Summer v early Winter arguement to make, however is it also possible that some 'management' of the issue had gone on in the intervening 2 years without full scale removal and re-pointing.
 

holl1984

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My child and I were outside when it happened - just about to go inside to purchase tickets to go and feed the ducks at the Heath in knutsford as our usual patch down by the river has a closed path currently.
There were 3 people on the platform - all ok. The noise was something else - made worse as there was also a lull in the road traffic so it was silent.

the school children from greenbank were taken care of - there was busses arriving at greenbank for them as I left my house to pick my other children up from school.
 

KeithMcC

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To be fair to NR, access to a wall immediately over any sort of fragile roof covering is difficult and would need a significant amount of scaffolding and possibly removing some panes of glass. Gable walls with no proper head restraint (no ties between the purlins and the wall) are often not terribly stable.
Whoever did the last inspection is probably checking their files!
 

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