Being an infrequent traveller on the LSW line towards Richmond, noticed yesterday the piers of a skew bridge across the LSW that were part of the East Putney and Wimbledon New Line according to old maps. I know this connection into the District is still used, but when was the bridge to the up line taken out of use/removed; was its imply to save maintenance costs?
Post by norbitonflyer on Oct 23, 2016 16:21:08 GMT
Bidirectiuonal working over the former down line introduced June 1990 www.glias.org.uk/news/126news.html#G Part of the Waterloo area resignalling (WARS) project, of which the most infamous outcome was the Clapham Junction rail crash.
Presumably the viaduct was removed after that, although it is possible that there was no up connection for a while. This item also dicusses the old W&C hoist, which was about to be removed at around that time.
The bridge fell into disuse during my time as a driver at Waterloo, 1980-1988. the reason was that the bridge was deemed unfit for the passage of trains. This caused some difficulties as just prior to that the crossovers that existed at Point Pleasant Junction were taken out of use along with some sidings serving I believe a milk depot on the up side of the Windsor Lines. this meant no access for up empty stock movements from Wimbledon Park Depot to Waterloo via East Putney. Access was kept on the down line as that didn't use the bridge.
This also resulted in a loss of flexibility when it came to disruption on the main lines, as up passenger trains and freight could no longer use the East Putney line either. Any diversions would have to be via the Byfleet-Chertsey curve, Staines and Richmond.
There used to be a crossover south of the junction between the DR and NR lines worked by East Putney signal box, but I understand that's long since gone. There was also an emergency hand-worked crossover on the DR north of East Putney.
The crossover north of East Putney only went a few years ago.
The one just south of the NR connection, located just where the signal cabin was, converted to a ground with electric operated points, is still in situ - although due to be removed during the Christmas 2016 shutdown.
Yes, the line was lifted to avoid replacing the bridge which was only used by a handful of ecs trains every day and the occasional diverted main liner.
It seems a bit daft removing the emergency crossover; it was remarkably handy during engineering works over the years. More than once I drove either 508s or 455s from East Putney to wimbledon single line workign with the DR terminating in the down/southbound platform at East Putney and using the other crossover to go back. Passengers were a bit puzzled! With the proposed removal of the crossover on Putney Bridge that will surely exacerbate any problems on the Wimbledon branch.
Further to the thread above, I can confirm that trains were still using the line from East Putney to Wandsworth Town via the flyover on the 5th December 1986 as I was booked to work a Sandite unit this way on this night. I was a Guard at Woking at the time and we worked all sorts of trains, with lots of engineers trains, as the Yard at Woking was still extensively used for engineers trains. I remember that there was some cause for concern from the Engineers that there were problems with the bridges on the line and subsequently I worked a ballast train (engineers train) on the 27th February 1987 hauled by 73133 from Woking Yard to Southfields. Here we entered a possession (the line was still owned and operated by BR then), and worked forward over the flyover to the embankment on the far side. The work that night consisted of removing the track from the Up Line to allow a full examination of the bridge structure. When the track was removed we returned to Woking via Clapham Yard and East Putney, as the examination would take place with the engineers once all the ballast was removed. The subsequent examination found the bridge to be in very poor condition and the down line was closed. The bridge was removed very soon after that and was never replaced, the solution being to work between East Putney and Point Pleasant Junction as a single line over the down line, with additional cross-overs at East Putney to access the Down line, and additional crossovers at Point Pleasant to access the up fast line much as the line is today. I am not sure but I think that it was deemed too expensive to replace the bridge for the amount of traffic which used the line. As posted earlier the Down line became reversible in 1990 and the route could be used in both directions once again. Between early 1987 and June 1990 it was worked in one direction only from Point Pleasant Junction to East Putney with empty trains from Wimbledon Park having to go to Wimbledon and reverse or use one of the other exits towards London on the Up Main Slow and Up Main Fast.
I worked a ballast train (engineers train) on the 27th February 1987 hauled by 73133 from Woking Yard to Southfields. and worked forward over the flyover to the embankment on the far side. The work that night consisted of removing the track from the Up Line to allow a full examination of the bridge structure. . The subsequent examination found the bridge to be in very poor condition and the down line was closed. .
Looks like you were on the very last train over that flyover, if they took the track up behind you and promptly condemned the flyover on the basis of what they found under there!
But surely you mean the up line was closed (although the up line actually went downhill, and vice versa, on that spur)
When they were up they were up, and when they were down they were down... The dates above sound about right to me with the up line (even though it went down) being taken out of use in 1987. I'm probably one of the few people around to have worked all permutations at East Putney. I've also used the emergency crossover between the up and down Windsor lines at Point Pleasant during engineering works. I can't remember the year, but the points were hand worked, clipped and scotched before movement was allowed, and this was for passenger trains.