Tag Archives: Wellington

RAF Museum at Cosford, Nov 17th


The RAF Museum, Cosford, Shropshire


Our first visit to Cosford – what a lot to see!  On the day of our visit the Royal Air Force Museum Cosford’s award winning Conservation Centre was open to the public – really worth seeing but not often open to the public.  Check their website for details:  rafmuseum.org.uk/cosford

We were there for about three hours, but a whole day could be taken quite easily.  I’ve included a gallery of photos, some of the planes I knew and some I didn’t – sorry.

A first class place to visit.

Click on the photos to enlarge


An addition to the Museum

One of the latest donations to the  museum.

Not too easy to read, but it is, in fact, a flier for a rail excursion from Wellington for a mid-week match at West Bromwich Albion, when they played Luton Town on 15th April 1959.

The Albion won the match 2-0, with goals from Ronnie Allen and David Burnside.  Later in the season, Luton Town faced Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup Final, losing 2-1.

It was the last season, so far (!), when the Wolves won the league title.

Chasewater Railway Museum June 1965 Bits & Pieces 29

More taken from the Mercian June 1965, Vol.4 No.3

Renowned Branch Lines

By Trer Pol & Pen

The Much Wenlock Branch

On Saturday, 21st July 1962, there closed to passengers yet another of GWR’s once numerous branch lines, that from Wellington to Much Wenlock.  Just over a year alter it was closed to all traffic and is now practically all lifted.Wellington Station – Roger Shenton

The line originally ran through to Craven Arms and was opened in five sections. 

Leaving Craven Arms station

Steam train tour leaves station on sharp North to East curve at Craven Arms

© Copyright Raymond Knapman and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

The section from Wellington to Coalbrookdale was opened on 1st July 1857, and was worked fro just four years by the Coalbrookdale Iron Company

Coalbrookdale Station

This is where the platform would have been. The line now carries only coal for the Ironbridge Gorge Power Station

© Copyright Mike White and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

which was absorbed by the GWR in 1892.  There had been a line to Coalbrookdale since 1st July 1854 running from the Shrewsbury and Birmingham main line west of Shifnal. 

Buildwas Junction

The next section, from Buildwas to Much Wenlock was opened on 1st February 1862, the same day as the Severn Valley line from Shrewsbury to Hartlebury, and worked by the Much Wenlock and Severn Junction Railway Company which was taken over by the GWR in 1896.  The Wenlock line continued to run as a branch of the Severn valley line until1st November 1864 when the Coalbrookdale to Buildwas section was opened, making through running between Wellington and Much Wenlock possible.

The next part to open was from Wenlock to Presthope on 5th December 1864 along the picturesque Wenlock Edge, to join the Shrewsbury and Hereford line at Marsh Farm Junction just north of Craven Arms.  Much Wenlock was provided with a tiny engine shed which housed a steam railcar for some years.  Other forms of motive power that have worked over the line include various types of GWR 2-6-2 tanks, 57xx and 64xx pannier tanks, Ivatt and Standard2-6-2 tanks and until closure of the line, single unit railcars.  An auto train with engine number 6421 ran for some months in 1961-62 but was soon withdrawn.

Longville Station

This former station on the line from Craven Arms to Buildwas via Much Wenlock has been tastefully converted into a private residence while keeping a railway theme.

© Copyright David Stowell and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

The first closure came on 31st December 1951, when the section south of Much Wenlock lost its passenger services and was closed completely south of Longville.  The line from Much Wenlock to Longville continued to carry a daily goods train until about 1960 when it was running ’as required’.  The beginning of the end came on 21st July 1962 when the last passenger train ran from Wellington to Much Wenlock, this town having reached its centenary by just over five months.  Shortly afterwards, the points were removed at the junction with the main line at Ketley Bank, and the line down to Lightmoor junction was worked as required via Madeley. 

Lightmoor Junction

The left fork here has been taken up. Further north, along its line, is the Horsehay Steam Trust. The right fork leads to Madeley Junction, a real junction this time, on the Wolverhampton to Shrewsbury line. Only goods trains, long lines of coal trucks heading to & from the Ironbridge Gorge Power Station pass along this line now.

© Copyright Mike White and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

On 30th November 1963, the section from Buildwas Junction to Longville was shut for all traffic in conjunction with the Severn Valley line.  This was to enable the entire lay-out and station at Buildwas to be completely demolished to make way for the CEGBs new power station to occupy the site. 

Buildwas coal-fired power station and River Severn

Originally based on local coal and the River Severn for cooling – coal now imported. An eyesore at the mouth of the Ironbridge Gorge.

© Copyright Bob Bowyer and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

This will give a new lease of life to the line between Madeley Junction and Buildwas as all the coal for this power station will come in over this route on the ‘merry-go-round’ principle.

All the stations and halts on the line are still standing (June 1965) in some form.  At Much Wenlock, the station house is still inhabited and the engine shed complete with a short length of track.  The entire track between Buildwas and Marsh Farm Junction is now lifted.Former Station from the Much Wenlock Information & Visitor Guide

Chasewater Railway Museum Oct.1959 Bits & Pieces 7

From the Railway Preservation Society Newsletter October 1959

Vol 1  No.2

Chairman’s Page

Anything from a button to a branch line

Yes, we are interested in anything of railway origin and historic interest.  We have no prejudices.  We are anxious to preserve all classes of relics from all pre-grouping companies, the big four and British Railways.  In fact, we want to build up a truly comprehensive collection of relics that will form a supplement to the British Transport Commission’s own invaluable collection of historic relics.

At the moment we do not possess either a button or a branch line!    We own about 50 relics from the range in between these two types.  Our largest is a 6-wheeled carriage, and we expect that we shall soon have satisfactory accommodation for this so that our members can work on its restoration.

The rest of our collection comprises small items, and until we have acquired the necessary rail space and land, we cannot expand our collection of large relics.  Both the West Midland and London & Home Counties Districts are working on this problem, and both hope to be able to announce a satisfactory conclusion to their searches.

We already have our eye on a few larger items such as signals, 4-wheeled, 6-wheeled and bogie coaches, as well as goods vehicles.  The number of larger items we buy each year is governed by the speed by which our membership grows.

Once again we are enclosing a second copy of this newsletter.  Please pass it on to somebody who is interested in the activities of the only national society dedicated to the preservation of standard gauge relics.

West Midland District

Outing to the Much Wenlock Branch, Saturday, 19th September.

A rather small but enthusiastic party attended the District’s first get-together and outing, exact figures being seven members, plus seven relations and friends.

The smallness of numbers did not mar the day, however, and a very enjoyable time was had by all.  The main party started from Stafford station and was joined by another member at Wellington.  The Station Master at Wellington came over prior to departure for Much Wenlock; he appeared most sympathetic to our aims, and reflected sadly on the closure of branch lines.

Wellington Station – Roger Shenton

The train pulled out on time from Wellington, headed by a 57xx class pannier tank No.3732.  The quaint halts en route to Buildwas Junction were noted, the driver, leaning through his cab window, pointed out several places of interest.  Coalbrookdale Iron Works were keenly watched by members, with interest in the fact that the first iron bridge in the world was cast there.  This was seen spanning the Severn as the train passed over a parallel bridge further up-stream.

Much Wenlock – Wellington

This delightful photograph epitomises the action on so many evocative branch lines in the West Midlands.  2-6-2T No.4142 was running under easy steam at Farley Dingle on 23rd April 1957 on a Much Wenlock to Wellington afternoon local service.  As so often happens when rural railway services are withdrawn, the trackbed was transformed into part of the modern road system.

Geoff Bannister

Buildwas Junction proved of interest, an ancient wagon turn-table being spotted, also the two platform levels, one for the Wenlock branch and one for the Severn Valley line.Buildwas Junction

The train passed Buildwas Abbey, a very picturesque sight on the west bank of the Severn.Buildwas Abbey

The gradients and curves then became very pronounced as the train made its way to the Wenlock terminus through the beautiful Shropshire countryside.

A member living at Much Wenlock met the party on arrival and very kindly took four members to Longville in his car, this line being open to freight only.  This excursion through the lovely Wenlock Edge was greatly appreciated.

The goods yard, sidings box and single engine shed (without loco) were inspected by the remaining members.  The ladies of the party visited the ancient Guildhall and Abbey, which proved full of historical interest.

After tea and a final look around Much Wenlock station, the party caught the 7.05 back to Wellington headed by the same pannier tank, but a different crew.

A vote of thanks must be recorded to the BR Staff at WR Wellington, for the kind way in which they answered questions, thus making the trip thoroughly worthwhile.

It is to be hoped that another outing of this nature will be better attended so that the RPS will continue to thrive and gain more publicity.  How about it, WMD members.

Date: 2002

Description: Buildwas Junction formed part of the Severn Valley line that ran from Hartlebury, near Droitwich, to Shrewsbury through Bridgnorth and Ironbridge. However, the line was disbanded in 1963 following Dr Beeching’s review of the railways. A section of track between Kidderminster and Bridgnorth has been preserved by the Severn Valley Company, but the track from Bridgnorth onto Shrewsbury was pulled up in the 1960’s and can no longer be used.