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Regency Rails - Georgian, Williamine & Early Victorian Railways

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"Other" might well have been cable haulage.

 

The motive power arrangements on the Canterbury and Whitstable (opened 1830) really highlight the confusion about the best way to haul trains in the 1820s. Despite the Stephensons being involved the line used stationary engines and horses as well as purchasing a steam locomotive from George Stephenson. The latter, the Invicta, was not successful, but in its defence it should be said that this short line had some fearsome gradients and locomotive haulage wasn't really cracked until the Stirling 0-6-0s (O class first, then R class) appeared in the late nineteenth century. Even then train lengths were limited.

 

Part of the issue was that the line was built before the decision was made on haulage, the result being that the line went straight up Tyler Hill so that a stationary engine with cable haulage could be used. This was around 1 in 40, 1 in 38 on the steepest bits, which was well beyond the capabilities of locomotives of that early period. There was a similar straight long gradient coming out of Whitstable. A line laid out for locomotive haulage would have swung about a bit instead of heading straight for the top.

 

There was always a story that the directors insisted on a tunnel, as a proper railway should have one, but how that story came about is a mystery. Anyone who knows the area can see that if not a tunnel then a very deep cutting would be required to get past the summit of Tyler Hill. Unfortunately, that early tunnel (claimed to be the first on a public railway) was built to a very cramped loading gauge and although the entire line was relaid when the South Eastern took over the C&W in the late 1840s, the expense of widening it was not deemed justifiable. The SER had to use specially cut down locos and strictly limit the stock allowed on the line, and even then trains were such a tight fit that locals nicknamed the line the "Bung".

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If anyone wants to go a bit further into the debates surrounding cable vs horse vs locomotive haulage, then a google books search in the 'Civil Engineers and Architects Journal' may prove fruitful. I was looking for details of the London and Blackwall, an extensive description of which appeared somewhere in 1848 or thereabouts, but on the periphery of the search I found loads of correspondence from 1839 debating the relative merits or otherwise of different forms of traction. We think that political rhetoric and spin are bad these days, but just look at the character assassination performed by one anonymous writer on George Stephenson and George Parker Bidder in the middle of this whole argument. If I can find the pages again, I'll put some links into the thread...

 

edited to add. Unusually in this, the Stephensons are being vilified for their stalwart support of cable haulage through the docks. It appears the anonymous 'Old Engineer' was in favour of locomotive traction!

Edited by L49
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Whart

 

“Other” in the mind of the drafter probably was cable/rope, and possibly gravity, but other is other, so the clause was exploited to allow the use of locomotives.

 

For those who wish to pursue the topic, there is an excellent book about rope haulage, published by the industrial railway society, which, among much else, covers the Camden incline out of Euston in good detail.

 

K

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“Other” in the mind of the drafter probably was cable/rope, and possibly gravity, but other is other, so the clause was exploited to allow the use of locomotives.

My understanding is that the M&K Act specifically authorised the use of steam locomotives.

 

According to P.J.G. Ransom in 'The Iron Road', "The Act of Incorporation empowered 'the Company of Proprietors ......to make and erect such and so many locomotive or moveable Engines as the said Company ..... shall from Time to Time think proper and expedient, and to use and employ the same in and upon the said Railway...' and so appears to have been the first such Act to include such a provision".

 

Jim

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If anyone wants to go a bit further into the debates surrounding cable vs horse vs locomotive haulage, then a google books search in the 'Civil Engineers and Architects Journal' may prove fruitful. I was looking for details of the London and Blackwall, an extensive description of which appeared somewhere in 1848 or thereabouts, but on the periphery of the search I found loads of correspondence from 1839 debating the relative merits or otherwise of different forms of traction. We think that political rhetoric and spin are bad these days, but just look at the character assassination performed by one anonymous writer on George Stephenson and George Parker Bidder in the middle of this whole argument. If I can find the pages again, I'll put some links into the thread...

 

edited to add. Unusually in this, the Stephensons are being vilified for their stalwart support of cable haulage through the docks. It appears the anonymous 'Old Engineer' was in favour of locomotive traction!

 

I seem to recall reading that a joint paper was prepared and presented by Joseph Locke and Robert Stephenson on an experiment into locomotive haulage on various gradients.

It was the results of this investigation that persuade Locke a direct assault on Shap without the need for a tunnel to reduce the grade was both feasible and operable.

 

It was the senior Stephenson who stood by the notion that locomotives could only cope with limited grades.

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Of interest to members of the PC is the article in this months BRM concerning Bruntons Steam Horse as modelled by Adrian Dyer.

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"The L&BR loaned some of the tanks to the impoverished East & West India Docks and Birmingham Junction Railway [which mercifully became the North London Railway in 1853] in its early years. (The E.W.I.D. & B.J.R. was so poor when it opened that there was a rumour its carriage bodies were built from papier-mâché.)"  

 

Hi Ian,

The use of papier-mâché for carriage bodies was not uncommon. Many early GWR broad gauge coaches were made of it and I think the example of a BG coach body side in Bristol Museum is made of it too? Somebody might be able to correct me on that though.

Chris

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"The L&BR loaned some of the tanks to the impoverished East & West India Docks and Birmingham Junction Railway [which mercifully became the North London Railway in 1853] in its early years. (The E.W.I.D. & B.J.R. was so poor when it opened that there was a rumour its carriage bodies were built from papier-mâché.)"  

 

Hi Ian,

The use of papier-mâché for carriage bodies was not uncommon. Many early GWR broad gauge coaches were made of it and I think the example of a BG coach body side in Bristol Museum is made of it too? Somebody might be able to correct me on that though.

Chris

 

Oh, hello, Chris.

 

Thank you for the Stroudley buffers, springs etc!

 

James

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Oh, hello, Chris.

 

Thank you for the Stroudley buffers, springs etc!

 

James

 

Aha, 

 

Hello James, no problem. Interesting to make connections, I didn't realise this was you. I must pay more attention in the future...!

 

Chris

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Aha, 

 

Hello James, no problem. Interesting to make connections, I didn't realise this was you. I must pay more attention in the future...!

 

Chris

 

No reason why you would have known.  You are less well disguised, however!

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Hang on... only 5 posts?

 

Chris?

 

Anyway, I need to order a whole host of bits from you at some point.

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Hang on... only 5 posts?

 

Chris?

 

Anyway, I need to order a whole host of bits from you at some point.

 

 

Yes, very few posts as I'm not particularly Tech Savvy (understatement of the century!) and this whole posting malarky is taking me a bit of time to get used to. I've only just about got to grips with the Blogging...

 

Anyway, I found the following regarding the use of Papier Mache and carriage construction.

 

post-25562-0-12388400-1527148003.jpgpost-25562-0-01400600-1527148016.jpgpost-25562-0-92108300-1527148029.jpg

 

It's particularly interesting that Mr Tayler suggests the use of Papier Mache for railway carriage wheels as well...!

 

Please excuse my lack of twiddly bits on the words Papier and Mache, my keyboard has seen better days.

 

Chris

 

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Yes, very few posts as I'm not particularly Tech Savvy (understatement of the century!) and this whole posting malarky is taking me a bit of time to get used to. I've only just about got to grips with the Blogging...

 

Anyway, I found the following regarding the use of Papier Mache and carriage construction.

 

attachicon.gifPapier Mache 01.jpgattachicon.gifPapier Mache 02.jpgattachicon.gifPapier Mache 03.jpg

 

It's particularly interesting that Mr Tayler suggests the use of Papier Mache for railway carriage wheels as well...!

 

Please excuse my lack of twiddly bits on the words Papier and Mache, my keyboard has seen better days.

 

Chris

 

Gosh.

 

"Improvements"!

 

And, as you note, for making wheels!

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Yes, very few posts as I'm not particularly Tech Savvy (understatement of the century!) and this whole posting malarky is taking me a bit of time to get used to. I've only just about got to grips with the Blogging...

 

Anyway, I found the following regarding the use of Papier Mache and carriage construction.

 

attachicon.gifPapier Mache 01.jpgattachicon.gifPapier Mache 02.jpgattachicon.gifPapier Mache 03.jpg

 

It's particularly interesting that Mr Tayler suggests the use of Papier Mache for railway carriage wheels as well...!

 

Please excuse my lack of twiddly bits on the words Papier and Mache, my keyboard has seen better days.

 

Chris

 

I wonder if this Mr Tayler had any links to the South Eastern Railway. In Gould's book there is a line about the SER having some carriages with papier mache panels. Also there is a distinct similarity to patent no. 13 (using wood or papier mache wedges to make carriage wheels) to the Mansell pattern wheels originally developed (and patented) by the SER's carriage superintendent

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I wonder if this Mr Tayler had any links to the South Eastern Railway. In Gould's book there is a line about the SER having some carriages with papier mache panels. Also there is a distinct similarity to patent no. 13 (using wood or papier mache wedges to make carriage wheels) to the Mansell pattern wheels originally developed (and patented) by the SER's carriage superintendent

 

 

Certainly worth further investigation. It seems he recommends papier mache board from William Brindley in Birmingham. Makes you wonder if that's because Brindley has supplied such material to other builders in the past, or recommends his Japan Board as eminently suitable for such use? Note the spelling of Machee.

 

"The use of Papier Mache in Railway Carriage Construction"...I feel a Journal article coming on...!

 

post-25562-0-95266900-1527157491.jpg

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This is pinched from Grace's Guide but would be another interesting lead worth following up.

 

post-25562-0-16138200-1527162423_thumb.jpg

 

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Can I tap the collective knowledge of the assembled Georgians and Wilhelmines?

 

In the early days, quite a lot of railways were built not with authorisation of Act of Parliament (and thus effectively compulsory purchase) but by negotiating a system of wayleaves, traffic-related payments, with landowners. This applied to a lot of colliery lines, but also to some that eventually became part of the 'proper' railway network. In the North East the Tanfield Branch would be one, and I have an idea the Stanhope and Tyne was originally based on wayleaves.

 

My question is - did all of these eventually get superseded by Parliamentary authorisations, or was the North Eastern, LNER or even conceivably BR still shellling out on wayleaves at a much later date?

 

Blow all to do with modelling, I know, but I'm curious - I can't see the Bishops of Durham and other eccesiastical landowners, for example, readily relinquishing a nice little earner.

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Can I tap the collective knowledge of the assembled Georgians and Wilhelmines?

 

In the early days, quite a lot of railways were built not with authorisation of Act of Parliament (and thus effectively compulsory purchase) but by negotiating a system of wayleaves, traffic-related payments, with landowners. This applied to a lot of colliery lines, but also to some that eventually became part of the 'proper' railway network. In the North East the Tanfield Branch would be one, and I have an idea the Stanhope and Tyne was originally based on wayleaves.

 

My question is - did all of these eventually get superseded by Parliamentary authorisations, or was the North Eastern, LNER or even conceivably BR still shellling out on wayleaves at a much later date?

 

Blow all to do with modelling, I know, but I'm curious - I can't see the Bishops of Durham and other eccesiastical landowners, for example, readily relinquishing a nice little earner.

 

 

Very interesting question. I think the answer probably varies from line to line on a case by case basis. The Stanhope & Tyne ran up huge debts as a result of having to pay wayleaves. I would have thought that whilst many smaller branch lines and as you say colliery lines were run on this system, most passenger lines in the early days were considerable undertakings and I would have thought would only go ahead under an Act of Parliament. I suspect the major routes were planned to bypass estate land rather than pay to go over it. Worth further investigation...

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As you say, it varied on a line-by-line basis, but other than money there was nothing to stop a private railway or tramway submitting a Bill to obtain an Act of Parliament, other than expense, overcoming opposition and the increased regulation.

 

The classic example is the Garliestown branch on the Isle of Whithorn. Authorised as a tramway, it was built as a railway, and had to retrospectively obtain an Act to dispense with the tramway it didn’t have, and build a railway which was already there!

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The main purpose of an Act of Parliament was to gain the rights to purchase land and cross highways. You need to look back in old Railway Magazines to see how controversial it was in the early 19th century to force landowners - generally aristocracy - to sell land to railway companies - generally run by new money oiks. It was not totally new, canals had required Acts of Parliament for the same reason, but the scale of the issue increased tremendously.

 

Incidentally, those early Railway Magazines also show another social class related problem - sticking to the timetable. Gentlemen of quality were used to the coachmen of the stage coach companies waiting politely while the gentlemen finished their conversations and other things before alighting the coach. They did not take kindly to railway guards and station masters hustling them aboard the train because the timetable insisted on a immediate departure.

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The main purpose of an Act of Parliament 

 

Prior to the Joint Stock Companies Act 1844 (and subsequent legislation that established the principle of limited liability), an Act of Parliament was needed to incorporate a company with the power to raise the capital required for a major undertaking such as a railway. I'm not quite sure of the history here but it seems likely that this Act was a trigger for the Railway Mania of 1845.

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Early tank engines were weird...

post-29975-0-34930800-1526393240.jpg

 

 

Designed by Dr. William Church for a Mr. Goddard and probably built by a Mr. Horton of Brierley Hill. 0-2-2WT with outside cylinders, placed horizontally at the rear of the boiler. Driving wheels 6ft. 2 1/2in. dia. It was tried in 1838 on the London & Birmingham Railway and was transferred to the Grand Junction Railway, where it was named Victoria. Tried by the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway in 1840, where it was named Surprise. The boiler exploded at Bromsgrove on 10th November 1840 killing two railway employees, Thomas Scaife and John Rutherford, who were buried in Bromsgrove churchyard.

 

The locomotive recieved a new boiler and a new name, this time Eclipse. It was transferred to the Swansea Vale Railway in the late 1850s, where it was rebuilt as a six-coupled tank.

 

The other loco in the picture appears to be an American Norris locomotive, one of which also exploded at Bromsgrove in the same year as the Church locomotive.

Edited by Ruston

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Designed by Dr. William Church for a Mr. Goddard and probably built by a Mr. Horton of Brierley Hill. 0-2-2WT with outside cylinders, placed horizontally at the rear of the boiler. Driving wheels 6ft. 2 1/2in. dia. It was tried in 1838 on the London & Birmingham Railway and was transferred to the Grand Junction Railway, where it was named Victoria. Tried by the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway in 1840, where it was named Surprise. The boiler exploded at Bromsgrove on 10th November 1840 killing two railway employees, Thomas Scaife and John Rutherford, who were buried in Bromsgrove churchyard.

 

The locomotive recieved a new boiler and a new name, this time Eclipse. It was transferred to the Swansea Vale Railway in the late 1850s, where it was rebuilt as a six-coupled tank.

 

The other loco in the picture appears to be an American Norris locomotive, one of which also exploded at Bromsgrove in the same year as the Church locomotive.

Interesting- I am related to the Horton family of Brierley Hill. They were boiler manufacturers and up until now I had no idea that they built railway locomotives! Do you happen to know the first name, or even an initial, of this particular Mr Horton?
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middleton railway was the first to be built by act of parliament in 1758, though i think mainly because it was necessary for one to build across common land

Edited by sir douglas

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