The Railway between Navigation Road and Stockport
This article by T. H. Appleby B. Sc. (Hons.), M. Sc., C. Eng., M. I. Struct. E. was written on
8th February 2013 and the photographs were taken on the same date.
many years, I have been in
favour of the construction of stations at Baguley and several other
locations on the railway between Navigation Road and Stockport. (There
used to be 12 stations, viz. Deansgate Lane, Moss Lane, Timperley,
Brooklands Central, also referred to as "Hale Road" (on Brooks Drive),
Butcher Lane, Roundthorn, Royalthorn, Sharston, Gatley, Cheadle,
Adswood and Edgeley. In the 1960's, they were all closed.
Brooklands Central had been an important transport node, served by
buses and also by double decked electric trams which had run between
Altrincham and Princess Parkway, along Stockport Road through Timperley
Village.) The old railway map below shows the line and
connecting lines. It probably dates from the late nineteenth
carried through trains, for passengers and goods
respectively, from Hunts Cross and Garston Docks in Liverpool
in the west to Hull in the east, via Warrington,
Broadheath (Altrincham), Stockport and Sheffield. Prior
to the construction of the railways, travel between Liverpool and
Hull or Grimsby had usually involved a sea voyage of about three days.
The site of
the former Brooklands Central mainline station, viewed from the bridge
on Shaftesbury Avenue, looking east, showing the
bridge on Brooks Drive (Hale Road)
The Wythenshawe Railway Action
Group, led by Mr. Eugene Ring, is campaigning for a railway station to
be built at Baguley and, inter alia, the famous guitarist Johnny Marr
and many pupils of local schools are supporting it.
The Metrolink line under
construction between Chorlton-cum-Hardy and the airport crosses the
railway in Baguley but no interchange is being built there.
new bridge which will carry the Metrolink line over the railway, on the
east side of Southmoor Road,
viewed from the south west.
that there is no provision for an interchange.
importantly, the whole project is a fiasco. During the
I submitted a statement to the effect that the money could be better
spent on bus services and I do not know of anyone who
disputed this. (However, I was in favour of the construction of the Metrolink line on
the route of the former railway between Trafford Bar and Didsbury,
In early 2010 (shortly before the
last General Election), the Labour Party published a leaflet ("Baguley
Rose"), containing an article entitled "Campaign for Baguley Rail Halt
Marches On". According to that article, the "campaign", by "your local
Labour team", aimed to have (inter alia) a railway station built at
Baguley. How could a Labour team have been campaigning for one to be
built there when, for almost 13
years, all the powers necessary to have one built there (and to have
appropriate related changes made to the signalling and timetables) had
been held by Labour politicians? People other than Labour politicians
really had been campaigning, for more than 13 years, for one to be
built there! THE ARTICLE DID NOT EVEN PROMISE THAT A RAILWAY STATION
WOULD BE BUILT THERE IF THE LABOUR PARTY WERE TO WIN THE GENERAL
I am not a member of any political
party and am not singling out the Labour Party for criticism. I have
also been disappointed by the Conservative and Lib. Dem. Parties in
relation to various issues. However, this nonsense from the Labour
Party did not surprise me. For many years, Labour politicians had been
making fatuous statements. I refer readers, for example, to Lord
Irvine's statement quoted on www.cronies.org.uk in the article re:
"scandalising the Court".
I hope that readers will campaign
for an interchange to be built in Baguley, where the Metrolink crosses
the railway, or at least a railway station connected by enclosed
walkways/ramps to the nearest Metrolink stop (on the east side of
Southmoor Road about 2 minutes' walk from the railway), all with CCTV coverage.
The Metrolink stop being built on the east side of Southmoor Road, near the junction of Floatshall Road,
viewed from the south east.
I hope that readers will also
discuss possible sites for railway stations east and west of
Baguley (not necessarily on the sites of former stations), especially ones on or near the boundary of the Broomwood Estate.
I asked Mr. Appleby to outline how, in his opinion, the Labour Government
should have acted in relation to the construction of extra stations on
existing railways in Greater Manchester and elsewhere.
He answered as follows:
Shortly after the 1997 General Election, it should have nationalised
Railtrack plc and the franchised train operating companies but it spent
money in other ways, for example on the Millenium Dome. (Incidentally,
I am NOT in favour of widespread nationalisation of industries.) It
should then have had plans drafted for general improvements to the
infrastructure, incorporating many extra stations (mainly to provide
interchanges with bus services) and published them for consultation. In
due course, it should have introduced a Bill to enable compulsory
purchase of the land necessary for the extra stations, access roads
etc. and to make related provisions. It should have aimed to have the
work done over a period of about 20 years. It could, instead, have
nationalised only Railtrack plc and tried to negotiate revised
contracts with the train operating companies (to have timetables
amended and to compensate them for extra costs) but that would have
been a poorer option.
Railtrack plc was, in effect, nationalised in 2002 but the Labour Government still failed to take appropriate action.
19th February 2013
Mr. Appleby is a retired Chartered Structural Engineer, with a
degree in civil engineering from Nottingham University and a master's
degree in structural engineering from Manchester University. He has been
interested in railways since he was a boy.
Credits to the following links