page updated
30 July 2017

Information - Facts & Figures

The various sections set out historical information about the railways in the Malverns that are not appropriate to include in the chronology.


Types of Signal Boxes

The chronology mentions type codes for the various signal boxes. The type codes were developed in the 1980s by members of the Signalling Record Society and published in “The Signal Box” under the pseudonym of The Signalling Study Group. The descriptions also appear in the Signal Box Registers published by the Signalling Record Society and the codes have been used in many other publications.

Type Explanation
GW type 7 Built c1896 until after 1921 to a ‘standard brick’ design.
Blue bricks were used for quoins, plinth and surrounds to doors and windows and a hip roof was provided. Early examples had a novel design of finial at the joints of ridge tiles - this was dispensed with c. 1901 and tiles were used instead, hip-hooks being used to hold sloping ridges in place. Chimneys, projecting slightly at rear, were used until c. 1905 after which date stoves were introduced. Heavy cast iron cills were used for the lower windows until 1906 when two rows of bevelled bricks were used instead. All earlier boxes had outside steps. Carved wooden brackets of new design provided at each pillar between sets of windows and at intervals along end and rear walls. Later boxes had side window in locking room, and windows in the doors of locking and battery rooms. These boxes were built to a standard set of sizes and it was the first design with the long-lasting “3 up, 2 down” type of upper window. Different sizes of window panels were made to suit sizes of box.
Sub type 7A. original version with finials.
Sub type 7B. now with hip hooks but still with chimney.
Sub type 7C. stove instead of chimney.
Sub type 7D brick cills to lower windows.
GW type 27 Timber framed equivalent to type 7.
Sub type 27A with finials and lead flashing.
Sub type 27C with hip hooks and tiles instead.
GW type 28 Gable roofed with 3 up and 2 down windows.
MK type 1 McKenzie & Holland with hipped roof and small, 4 pane, windows.

With the passage of time repairs and alterations have sometimes altered or obscured the features that distinguish the types; none more so than the replacement windows utilised in the 21st century refurbishment program. The counter to this change of window style is, of course, that the working environment of the signaller was much improved.


Signal Box Hours of duty

These hours are a clear statement of the hours of day and night when it is possible to run trains along the line. Generally speaking, if all the signal boxes are closed then no trains can run. In recent years the lines in the Malverns have been closed during the night hours.

Some signal boxes were equipped with 'closing switches' which allowed them to be switched out of circuit when not required. When switched out the running signals in both directions would be left 'off' for the passage of trains. During the time such boxes were 'closed out', the number of trains that could be run was inevitably reduced.

The signal boxes are listed in line order in the down direction, down being from both Worcester Shrub Hill and Tunnel Junctions to Hereford.

As at 1st October 1945

Source: GWR Service Timetable Appendix No.12.

Signal Box Monday Tuesday - Saturday Sunday Closing Switch
Shrub Hill Junction Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Tunnel Junction Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Rainbow Hill Junction Continuously Continuously Continuously Yes
Foregate Street 6.0am – 10.30pm 6.0 am – 1030pm 10.10am – 12noon Yes
Henwick Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Leominster Junction 5.15am – 9.15pm 5.15am – 9.15pm 9.0am – 6pm Yes
Newland East Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Newland West 6.0am to 2pm Yes
Malvern Link Continuously Continuously Continuously Yes
Great Malvern 5.15am – 10.40pm 5.15am – 10.40pm 9.0am – 11.30pm Yes
Malvern & Tewksbury Junction 5.15am – 9.15pm 5.15am – 9.15pm Closed Yes
Malvern Wells Station Continuously Continuously Continuously Yes
Malvern Wells Tunnel Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Colwall Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Cummings Crossing 6.0am to 6.0am Yes
Ledbury North End Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Ledbury Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Ashperton 6.0am - 12 midnight 6.0am - 12 midnight 8.0am 6pm Yes
Stoke Edith Continuously Continuously Continuously No
Withington 6.0am - 10pm 6.0am - 10pm 9.0am - 7pm/td> Yes
Shelwick Junction Continuously Continuously Continuously Yes
Barr's Court Junction Continuously Continuously Continuously Yes
Barr's Court Station Continuously Continuously Continuously Yes

Running Powers

Running Powers existed where the trains of one company were permitted access over the lines of another company. In most instances, but not all, these powers arose from agreements reached during the parliamentary process of obtaining an Act allowing construction of a railway. A common reason for such agreement was to remove an objection to the bill going through parliament and, in these cases, the running powers thus given were enshrined in the resultant Act of Parliament. Running powers were explicity stated and were not reciprocal.

Where joint lines were concerned the arrangements usually allowed for trains of all the participating parties to have access. Worcester Shrub Hill passenger station was jointly owned.

List of running powers were published in the Railway Junction Diagrams books issued by the Railway Clearing House.

With the 'grouping' of 1923 many running powers were extinguished by virtue of the companies concerned have amalgamated and this process of extinction was largely completed with the nationalisation of the railway on 1st January 1948.

A form of running powers now exists again whereby each Train Operator is only authorised to run over certain lines; this situation having arisen from the privatisation of the railways in the 1990s. Some flexibility in times of disruption has thus been lost!

Great Western Railway (West Midland Amalgamation) Act 1863

Midland Railway trains over Great Western Railway lines between Worcester & Hereford authorised but deferred until the single line sections other than through Colwall and Ledbury tunnels have been doubled. The West Midland Railway agreed to double the relevant lines within 5 years. The running powers were not to interfere with local traffic arrangements.

Railway Junction Diagrams Books 1915 & 1922

Midland Railway trains over Great Western Railway lines:

Section of Line Type of Traffic
Abbots Wood Junction to Worcester all trains.
Hereford Brecon Curve all trains.
Stoke Works to Worcester all trains.
Worcester to Shelwick Junction merchandise (goods); free of toll between Malvern Link and Malvern Junction.
Worcester Tunnel Junction to Malvern coaching (passenger); free of toll between Malvern Link and Malvern Junction.

Midland Railway trains over Shrewsbury & Hereford Joint Railway (GWR & LNWR) lines:

Section of Line Type of Traffic
Hereford Brecon Curve to Hereford coaching (passenger)
Shelwick Junction to Hereford Barrs Court Junction North merchandise (goods)


Facilities at Stations

For many years a basic list of facilities was published periodically by the Railway Clearing House on behalf of the railway industry under the title “Handbook of Stations”. Between main editions supplements were issued. The Handbooks were used by the railway companies and were also sold to other companies and organisations who wanted to buy them.

The prime purpose of the book was to allow railway clerks and others responsible for accepting forwarding traffic to know whether or not the destination point could handle the traffic or needed to know where responsibility for specific private sidings lay.

One interesting feature of the books was the perpetuation of showing the pre-grouping company names despite grouping and subsequent nationalisation. However, this did help correct routing when duplicated place names abounded on the railway network.

The last full edition was published in 1956 and supplements continued until November 1964, after which the substantial closure of goods yards rendered continued publication superfluous.

The facilities were coded in the book:

G = Goods.
P = Passenger & Parcels.
P* = Passenger only.
F = Furniture Vans, Carriages, Portable Engines, Machines of Wheels.
L = Livestock.
H = Horse Box & Prize Cattle Cans.
C = Carriages by Passenger Train; later included Motor Cars by Passenger Train.

Crane power was quoted in Tons and Hundredweights (cwt). Where a second railway company had access to a station, the access was sometimes only for a sub-set of the facilities. In these circumstances the station would be listed twice to make it clear what facilities were available to each of the companies involved. This has been standardised in the table to ease cross-reference. As the years went by the amount of detail in the handbook increased which is why some earlier entries in the table are blank for some locations or expected facilities not shown even though they existed at that time.

Generally speaking the Handbooks did not quote dates of change, notification of precise dates were issued as appropriate by the relevant railway company and circulated using the general and facilities circulars issued by each railway company. Precise dates cannot, therefore, be given in this table for the changes.

Whilst each station was owned by just one company, facilities were available for other companies with running powers access as well. Where two companies had facilities at a station, the owning company is listed first. It is unlikely that each company had a separate crane with the result that the one crane was used by both. The disappearance of a facility category or crane power and subsequent reappearance may be down to a suspension of the facility, a delay in replacing a worn out crane, or may simply due to 'clerical error'. Unless other evidence is forthcoming your guess as to which is as valid as mine!

Location Published Company Facilities Crane
Bransford Road January 1890
June 1895
Great Western
Midland
G P L
G L
Bransford Road 1904 Great Western
Midland
G P
G P
2 tons
Bransford Road 1912 Great Western
Midland
G P
G
2 tons
Bransford Road 1925
1938
Great Western
London Midland & Scottish
G P
G
2 tons
Bransford Road
 
1956 British Railways G P 2 tons
Newland Halt 1938 Great Western P*  
Newland Halt
 
1956 British Railways P*  
Malvern Link January 1890
June 1895
Great Western
Midland
G P F L
G P F L
10 tons
Malvern Link 1904 Great Western
Midland
G P F L H C
P H C
10 tons †
Malvern Link 1912 Great Western
Midland
G P F L H C
G P F L H C
10 tons
Malvern Link 1925
1938
Great Western
London Midland & Scottish
G P F L H C
G P F L H C
6 tons
Malvern Link
 
1956 British Railways G P F L H C 6 tons
Malvern Link
 
April 1963 * British Railways G P F H C 6 tons
Great Malvern January 1890
June 1895
Great Western
Midland
P
P
 
Great Malvern 1904
1912
Great Western
Midland
P H C
P H C
 
Great Malvern 1925 Great Western
London Midland & Scottish
P H C
P H C
 
Great Malvern 1938 Great Western
London Midland & Scottish
P H C
P H C
 
Great Malvern
 
1956 British Railways P H C  
Malvern Junction Siding January 1890
June 1895
Midland    
Malvern Junction Siding 1904 Midland G  
Malvern Sidings 1912 Midland G  
Malvern Sidings 1925
1938
London Midland & Scottish G  
New Midland Sidings
 
December 1949 * British Railways G  
New Midland Sidings
 
1956 British Railways G  
Malvern Wells (GW) January 1890
June 1895
1904
1912
Great Western G P 3 tons
Malvern Wells (GW) 1925 Great Western
London Midland & Scottish
G P
G P
3 tons
Malvern Wells (GW) 1938 Great Western
London Midland & Scottish
G P L
G P
3 tons
Malvern Wells (GW)
 
1956 British Railways G P L 3 tons
Malvern Wells (GW)
 
April 1963 * British Railways G P 3 tons
Malvern Wells (MR) January 1890
June 1895
Midland G P F L 10 tons
Malvern Wells (MR) 1904
1912
Midland G P F L H C 5 tons
Malvern Wells (MR) 1925 London Midland & Scottish G P F L H C 5 tons
Malvern Wells (MR) 1938 London Midland & Scottish G P F L H C 3 tons
Malvern Wells (MR)
 
December 1949 * London Midland & Scottish G P F L H C  
Colwall January 1890 Great Western G P F L 1 ton 10 cwt
Colwall 1892 *
June 1895
Great Western
Midland
G P F L
G F L
1 ton 10 cwt
Colwall 1904
1912
Great Western
Midland
G P F L H C
G F L
1 ton 10 cwt
Colwall 1925
1938
Great Western
London Midland & Scottish
G P F L H C
G F L
1 ton 10 cwt
Colwall 1956 British Railways G P F L H C  
Colwall April 1963 * British Railways G P F H C  

Private Sidings

These arise where a specific company has a private siding agreement with the railway company. The siding was owned by the private company and, depending on the specific agreement, maintained by either the railway or the private owner. Private sidings should not be confused with railway owned sidings which were (normally) dedicated to a specific trader or type of traffic.

Station Year Siding
Malvern Link 1904
1912
1925
1938
1956
Link Gas Works.


Malvern UDC Gas Works.
West Midlands Gas Board.
 
Great Malvern 1925
1938
1956
 
Malvern Girls College.
Colwall 1925 West of England Granite Quarries Ltd.
Colwall December 1949 * Admiralty Old Tunnel.

Notes:
* after the publication date denotes a change notified in an Appendix or Supplement.
† shown against GW part of entry only.


Timetables: Railway

The railway industry generally produced two types of timetable:

Public (PTT), which contained the publicly advertised times of passenger trains, and
Working (WTT), which contained operational detail of the trains and were normally split into separate books for passenger and freight traffic. WTTs were not available to the public at large although Network Rail now makes them freely available on its web site.

British Railways generally produced regional and all line public timetables and the all line versions were perpetuated by Railtrack and Network Rail. However, Network Rail subsequently stopped publication of the PTT and left it to private providers to produce versions. Smaller pocket timetables were also produced and production of these continues with the train operating companies.

A selection of these timetables are available for viewing here:

* - denotes from Bradshaw rather than railway company issue.


Timetables: Local Buses in Malvern

For many years the principal bus operator in Malvern was the Birmingham & Midland Motor Omnibus Company, trading under the name “Midland Red”.


Late Running Trains

The Great Western Railway was not exceptional in running some trains late any more than the present day train operators are!

An instruction issued by the Superintendent of the line to operate from June 1907 set out which locations were to telegraph or telephone late running information ahead of trains. Within the Malvern area the requirements were:

Station Information Sent Information Received
Malvern Link Box   From Great Malvern Office: the folloing passenger trains ex Hereford: 11.32am, 12.50pm, 2.22pm, 3.12pm, 4.22pm and 6.20pm.
Great Malvern To Malvern Link: the following passenger trains ex Hereford: 11.32am, 12.50pm, 2.22pm, 3.12pm, 4.22pm and 6.20pm.

To Worcester Shrub Hill Office: all up Hereford passenger trains except 7.45am, 11.32am and 8.10pm and 3.40pm Cardiff (Fridays only) and 8.29am ex Malvern Wells.
From Hereford Barrs Court Office: the following passenger trains ex Hereford: 8.40am, 11.32am, 12.50pm, 2.22pm, 4.20pm, 5.8pm (Fridays only), 6.20pm and 8.50pm; also all express excursions and second portions of divided trains.

From Worcester Shrub Hill Office: 2.22pm ex Worcester.

From Ledbury Box: 8.10pm passenger ex Hereford.
Malvern Wells   From Hereford Barrs Court Office: all second portions of divided trains.
Colwall   From Hereford Barrs Court Office: Second portion of divided trains.
Ledbury Box To Gloucester Office: All up branch passenger trains when running 5 minutes late or more.

To Great Malvern Office: 8.10 pm passenger train ex Hereford.
From Over Junction (telephone): All Newent line passenger trains when running 5 minutes late or more.

From Worcester Shrub Hill Office: 9.35am, 9.50am, 1.0pm, 3.30pm, 4.2pm, 4.15pm, 6.25pm, 7.10pm, and 8.10pm ex Worcester.

From Hereford Barrs Court: Second portion of divided trains and the following trains ex Hereford: 7.45am, 8.10am, 8.40am, 9.48am, 11.30am, 12.50pm, 12.57pm, 2.20pm, 3.10pm, 4.20pm, 5.8pm, 5.10pm, 6.20pm, 8.10pm and 8.50pm and all express excursions.
Ledbury Rea Bridge Box To Hereford Barrs Court: all down passenger trains and all Chepstow excursions.

To Shelwick Junction: All down passenger trains.
 

Census

This section contains some entries extracted form the Census that refer to railway employees.

1871 Census

People who were at home on the night of 2nd April 1871.

Address Name Position Age Occupation Born Reference
District 3, Leigh
16 Spring Gardens John Powell Head   Railway Porter Epsom -
16 Spring Gardens - Powell Daughter   - Malvern Link  
Lower Howsell Road James Smith Head   Platelayer Leigh 129
Lower Howsell Road John Williams Head   Platelayer   129
  Ebenezer Hobbs Head 59 Gateman to Great Western Railway Bredon Page 30
  Thomas Davies Head 46 Signalman Standwater, Gloucestershire Page 30
  Emma Davies Wife 42   Forthampton, Gloucestershire Page 30
  Jane Davies Daughter 3   Leigh Sinton Page 30

1881 Census

People who were at home on the night of 3rd April 1881.

Address Name Position Age Occupation Born Reference
District 3, Leigh
104 Stocks Lane George Batchelor     Railway Signalman    
Newland
Cottage Albert Powell   18 Railway Porter   36