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Yate Station Goods - How was is shunted?


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Hi all,

I recently saw a photo on eBay that intrigued me, so I bought it. Although it is undated, looking at the vehicle in the yard it is possibly around 1910 - 1920ish (at a guess). I have some questions regarding the operations of the goods yard, and I'm hoping that there is someone on RMWeb that is knowledgeable in this respect.

Yate.jpg.b6ba4b0a973e9917686e48117dfe2730.jpg

 

To serve the goods yard, there is a small wagon turntable connected to the main line via two short connections, and another 5 "sidings" off the turntable. On closer examination, the two connections to the main line are protected by each having a single rail "trap", the rodding for which crosses both main lines as evidenced in the photo. There also appears to be a 3rd rodding connection to the turntable itself, which I assume is some sort of locking mechanism for the turntable rather than a means of turning it. There also appears to be two ground signals associated with the main line connections.

 

Would anyone have details on how the goods wagons were accessed/egressed from the goods yard? Presumably, to prevent any undue blockage of the main lines, trains would be routed into the loops (behind the camera) and wagons shunted to/from there a few at a time. Were engines allowed over the small turntable, or was a small shunting engine kept on hand for this purpose? Or indeed, were shunters even barred from running over the turntable and any shunting in the goods yard was carried by staff using pinch bars and/or a horse?

 

I also presume that all signals and points associated with the goods yard were controlled directly from the signal box rather than a ground frame (released by the signal box).

 

Many thanks in anticipation.

 

I also provide an image from the NLS website showing the genaral area, and the bridge that I assume the photo was taken from.

image.png.724a6b33c3a7d676918cc9404c312b9e.png

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I can see no sign of a stable, so not perhaps horses. Railway wagons could be moved by human power but a rope or chain attached to loco and wagon might be the best bet. 

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It a common feature on that section of the midland. So they would have had to use  capstan and rope or they would have taken so long to shunt each of the yards it would have caused large distribution to the WTT.

Marc

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Posted (edited)

This photo is reproduced in P. Smith, An Historical Survey of the Midland in Gloucestershire (OPC, 1985), where it is dated 1932. The railway vehicle appears to be a Midland prize cattle or calf van, though I think the LMS built some similar vehicles. This unusual goods yard layout dates back to the Bristol & Gloucester's Brunellian broad gauge origins. In addition to Yate, Charfield and Frocester had this compact layout. At Frocester, that was all there was until the end; Charfield gained a more conventional goods loop on the down side south of the passenger station, with the usual cattle pens and end loading bank and also, unusally for the Midland, coal drops. At Yate, there was also a loop to an ore loading bank alongside the junction for the Thornbury line, behind the camera. The other original stations, Wickwar, Berkeley Road, and Stonehouse, seem to have had more conventional layouts from the start, with their Brunel Gothic goods sheds on trailing loops. 

 

I suppose that a train with wagons for one of these stations with the compact layout would come to a stand on the running line, uncouple the wagons, draw forward, then set back so that the rearmost wagon was on the turntable. It would then be manhandled (or horsehandled) into its position for unloading, then the next wagon in the same way. Wagons going out would be dealt with in a similar manner - perhaps first! Probably there weren't more than one or two wagons a day. An almost identical photo of Charfield, also taken in 1932, from the bridge against which the express was wreaked four years earlier, shows a couple of vans on the shed road, one almost standing on the turntable, with another on the opposite line, facing the connection to the up line. The pick-up goods train would be timetabled such that this shunting while occupying the running lines would not obstruct other traffic.

 

At Charfield, the turntable was removed in 1956, leaving the shed with a trailing connection onto the down line and a kick-back siding to the loading bank.

Edited by Compound2632
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10 hours ago, Compound2632 said:

This photo is reproduced in P. Smith, An Historical Survey of the Midland in Gloucestershire (OPC, 1985), where it is dated 1932. The railway vehicle appears to be a Midland prize cattle or calf van, though I think the LMS built some similar vehicles. This unusual goods yard layout dates back to the Bristol & Gloucester's Brunellian broad gauge origins. In addition to Yate, Charfield and Frocester had this compact layout. At Frocester, that was all there was until the end; Charfield gained a more conventional goods loop on the down side south of the passenger station, with the usual cattle pens and end loading bank and also, unusally for the Midland, coal drops. At Yate, there was also a loop to an ore loading bank alongside the junction for the Thornbury line, behind the camera. The other original stations, Wickwar, Berkeley Road, and Stonehouse, seem to have had more conventional layouts from the start, with their Brunel Gothic goods sheds on trailing loops. 

 

I suppose that a train with wagons for one of these stations with the compact layout would come to a stand on the running line, uncouple the wagons, draw forward, then set back so that the rearmost wagon was on the turntable. It would then be manhandled (or horsehandled) into its position for unloading, then the next wagon in the same way. Wagons going out would be dealt with in a similar manner - perhaps first! Probably there weren't more than one or two wagons a day. An almost identical photo of Charfield, also taken in 1932, from the bridge against which the express was wreaked four years earlier, shows a couple of vans on the shed road, one almost standing on the turntable, with another on the opposite line, facing the connection to the up line. The pick-up goods train would be timetabled such that this shunting while occupying the running lines would not obstruct other traffic.

 

At Charfield, the turntable was removed in 1956, leaving the shed with a trailing connection onto the down line and a kick-back siding to the loading bank.

Many thanks "Compound" for the detail and reference to the P. Smith book, much appreciated. 

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