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Thread: Water pick-up troughs

  1. #1
    Senior Member HollyBlack's Avatar
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    Default Water pick-up troughs

    Only for those who have lived long enough to remember the days of steam railways :-)

    Does anyone know anything about the water pick-up troughs that were between the rails at Edge Hill? What trains services used them? When were they installed? Does anyone have photos?

    In the fifties and into the sixties I would travel on the Crewe to Lime Street stopping service and be held up on the big left hand curve at Edge Hill, waiting for the road into Lime Street. As I recall (it has been a while) there were the inevitable empty coaches parked to the left on the inside of the curve and the water troughs (more than one), shiny and full of water, would be on the right.

    It wouldn't makes sense for trains headed into Lime Street to use them so near to the end of their journey and on a steep downhill. So I can only speculate they might have been for expresses leaving Riverside station. ButI don't know this for a fact, I never actually saw them being used.


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    Member mike delamar's Avatar
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    Hi Hollyblack, ive seen lots of pics of the area in the 1950s but have never seen anything of water troughs. is this the area you mean by the entrance to the shed? seems odd that they would be so close to a terminus station





    Mike

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    Senior Member HollyBlack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike delamar View Post
    Hi Hollyblack, ive seen lots of pics of the area in the 1950s but have never seen anything of water troughs. is this the area you mean by the entrance to the shed? seems odd that they would be so close to a terminus station ...
    Yes, I have always thought it odd too.
    And no-one else is reported as having any recollection.
    But I'm having trouble believing I imagined it!

    Your photo is, I believe where the Chat Moss line diverges from the Runcorn Gap line and where I waited (in the 1950s) in a "side corridor" coach many a time waiting for the road into Lime Street. As I recall it the water troughs were parallel to and to the North of the line on which my train traveled and on a straight section between the curve in the photo and the platforms at Edge Hill station. That is around lat=53.403737 lon=-2.93744

    Well perhaps we will get the the bottom of the mystery one day. (If) there were water troughs there surely must be photos of them somewhere. I believe that steam hauled expresses ran direct from Riverside Station (no change of loco at Edge Hill) only for a relatively short period (due to weight restrictions near Riverside) and such trains would have been the only conceivable users of water troughs.

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    Senior Member HollyBlack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike delamar View Post
    Hi Hollyblack, ive seen lots of pics of the area in the 1950s but have never seen anything of water troughs. is this the area you mean by the entrance to the shed? seems odd that they would be so close to a terminus station ...
    Quote Originally Posted by HollyBlack View Post
    Yes, I have always thought it odd too.
    And no-one else is reported as having any recollection.
    But I'm having trouble believing I imagined it!

    Your photo is, I believe where the Chat Moss line diverges from the Runcorn Gap line and where I waited (in the 1950s) in a "side corridor" coach many a time waiting for the road into Lime Street. As I recall it the water troughs were parallel to and to the North of the line on which my train traveled and on a straight section between the curve in the photo and the platforms at Edge Hill station.

    Well perhaps we will get the the bottom of the mystery one day. (If) there were water troughs there surely must be photos of them somewhere.
    It would appear so, I was reminiscing with a relative on the telephone who suddenly blurted out. "They weren't at Edge Hill, silly. They were at Ditton."
    And so they were, the Crewe stopping train used to sit waiting for the road at Ditton, just as it did at Edge Hill. And the water troughs were there, near Ditton Junction where the train stood endlessly waiting for the signal in the 1950s. I had confused the two places for waiting on the same trips.

    Now I just need to track down a photo or two of the water troughs at Ditton.
    L&NWR installed gear I think.

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    Railway Signal Engineer mikewturner's Avatar
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    Ah that explains things. Halebank troughs are the ones you are on about. Dont think I have a photo but will check.

    Mike

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    Senior Member HollyBlack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikewturner View Post
    Ah that explains things. Halebank troughs are the ones you are on about. ...
    Ah, thank you.

    I was trying to imagine what services and locos used the troughs in their heyday. They must have been used during the war, or they would not have survived it. Troop trains to Liverpool from all over perhaps.

    But we forget how different things were.

    I recently watched, once again, the iconic 1936 GPO film "The Night Mail" of the LMS down postal ("it is an express but it carries no passengers") that "leaves Euston at 8:30pm every day except Saturdays". But I was shocked to realise that, at that time, there were only two scheduled West-coast through services per day from Glasgow to London.
    Plus lots and lots of excursions and specials, mostly for sporting events.

    Today of course it is quite the converse, lots of regular services but few specials. It wondered whether there still any TPOs that do mail snatching on the fly? Great stuff for trains sets for young boys (of all ages ;-)

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