Worcester Shrub Hill

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last updated 17 March 2013

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Worcester index | Diagram | Henwick & Foregate St | Shrub Hill | Tunnel Jct | Norton Jct


23/3/05

Shrub Hill Junction box controlled the layout at this end of the station in days of yore, when this bracket also had subsidiary arms. These signals are now worked from Shrub Hill Station box, at the other end of the station (see further down).
The Hereford line can be seen diverging to the left, while the others curve round to Tunnel Jct. The signal on the right is pulled off for a sprinter to depart from the opposite platform.
In the distance, the rear of Tunnel Jct's starter, with Shrub Hill Station's lower-arm fixed distant, can be seen.
Signals at the north end of Shrub Hill
Shrub Hill disc signal This is the last of the Shrub Hill 'banjo' disc signals. When I first started coming here, there were three sets (main + calling-on discs) between the platform and through lines in each direction - see below - the discs for the latter being mounted on the footbridge. A further single disc under the awning also served as the down platform starter.
This is all the layout that now remains in the middle of the station. The near end of the middle road is now a dead-end siding. A Cotswold Line train can be seen approaching the down inner home. Shrub Hill platforms
Shrub Hill towards Norton Junction This is the view south, past Shrub Hill Station box, towards Norton Junction. The signaller has pulled off for the train I arrived on to depart towards Bristol.
Originally, the centre-pivoted up platform starter (opposite) had a lower-arm distant for Wylds Lane Junction, which controlled the junction at the bottom of the goods yard. The down innerhome (back to camera against the sky) now looks rather forlorn on its own on that bracket - originally there was a second doll for the through line arms and both had fixed distants for Shrub Hill Junction beneath, as well as calling-on arms.
These photos were among the very first I took with my new Canon EOS-20D Digital SLR. This shot is simply the centre area of the one above, extracted at full camera resolution. You can see clearly the goods junction at Wylds Lane, the down home that was added when WL was abolished, and the Shrub Hill Station up starter and even advanced starter. The grey hut towards the left houses the North Sidings Ground Frame. Wylds Lane area

15/9/05

Shrub Hill from the south This is the view back towards Shrub Hill from the overbridge visible in the above photo. In the foreground is the rear of the up advanced starter; the down home and junctions at Wylds Lane are in the middle distance. Beyond that can be seen the up starter and down innerhome. A freight train waits in one of the through sidings.

5/3/06

Shrub Hill's up homes from the Hereford line, with calling-on arms. Shrub Hill's up branch homes
Lines north from Shrub Hill A view from the up platform of Shrub Hill towards the junction. The rear of the above signal can be seen on the left. On this occasion the DMU depot was well occupied - it was a Sunday.
A closer shot of the centre-pivoted up platform starter (SH7). Up platform starter
HST departs for Hereford A long-range shot of an HST departing for Hereford. The signal on the right is the up main home from Tunnel Junction, despite standing to the right of the up main.
The signal for trains reversing out of the up platform (SH77) is pulled off for a train to Great Malvern, so its route indicator displays "H'Ford". This is the same type of mechanical route indicator as fitted to the up platform to down main/branch signal at Yeovil Pen Mill. I have included a brief description of how they work there, and there are some more shots of this signal below. Side view of SH77 pulled off to Hereford
Goods lines behind the up platform The through goods lines (to the left of the leftmost signal), and various sidings, run behind the up platform. The line in the foreground serves the opposite face of the north end of the platform, but trains from this line can only run southwards and I have only ever seen it used for stabling rolling stock. The buffer stops on the right are the end of the up bay platform line.
Shortly afterwards, a Pacer arriving from Bristol passes the down innerhome. Note that this signal too is to the right of the line it applies to. Pacer arriving from Bristol
Up bay starter, off The up bay starter (SH11) pulled off as the Pacer waits to depart for Bristol, having been shunted here from the down platform. Note the rather crude blanking plate that has been fitted to the signal post to hide the main platform starter (earlier photos) and reduce the risk of drivers reading the wrong signal.
A down goods train passes Shrub Hill Station signalbox. Down goods passing through
Goods passes banjo signal The banjo signal, cleared, as the same goods train passes.
This yellow disc protects the crossover from the middle siding to the down platform. The disc is yellow because it may be passed in the on position by trains running straight ahead onto the dead-end spur. Yellow disc on middle siding
Yellow disc with detector Behind the yellow disc is a mechanical point detector. The slides connected to the point blades have notches in them which prevent the slide connected to the signal wire from moving unless the points are in the correct position.
The lower disc of the pair at the other end of the same crossover cleared for an approaching up HST. Double disc cleared for up train
HST departs for Paddington The HST departs for Paddington, crossing from the down platform to the up line towards Norton Junction.
A close look at the down signals, in the background here, reveals the purpose of the fixed distant under the home. You can see that the latter has been pulled off, even though the innerhome remains at danger and there is no train immediately approaching. Normally this would not be allowed, as it is an important safety rule (TS1 4.6.1, formerly Rule 39(a)) in semaphore areas that unless the signaller can clear all his signals for a train, it must be checked at each one in succession with the signal being cleared only when the train has drawn up almost to a stand at it. Having the fixed distant allows the home to be cleared immediately even when the innerhome must remain at danger (provided there is an overlap available beyond the latter). Down home only off
Down platform to up starter A closer view of the up starting signal from the down platform (SH10).

25-29/5/07

A train from Birmingham is 'called on' into the up platform with another train standing at the far end. Train called on into Platform 2
Down station siding discs The discs controlling the exits from the down station (formerly Motorail) sidings.
A closer view of the slotting on SH77 signal, in the on position. SH77 slotting (signal on)
SH77 off to Tunnel Jct Now the signal has been pulled off for a Birmingham train...
... and the pull on the signal wire, connected to the far balance lever, has lifted that lever which in turn raised the cross-piece bolted to the central lever connected to the signal arm. The movement of the far lever also raised the "B'HAM" stencil into view on the indicator. If the signal is pulled off for the Hereford line, the near balance lever is raised, causing the arm to clear and the "H'FORD" stencil to appear. SH77 slotting (off to Tunnel Jct)
Middle road yellow disc off The yellow disc cleared for a shunting move from the middle road.
Shrub Hill Station signalbox. Shrub Hill Station signalbox
Goods yard stop board Another old-style stop board in the goods yard, similar to the one pictured above.
A closer view of the down direction through siding signal controlled from the "Tail Lamp" Ground Frame. Down through siding signal
Goods yard ground frame This is the "Tail Lamp" Ground Frame, controlling the two signals on the goods lines that are normally left in the off positions.
The frame above is in front of the clean bricked arch towards the center here. Goods yard ground frame

13/4/08

Pointwork in goods lines The pointwork in the through goods lines, with the ground frame on the right.
A closer view of the above, with the signals at Wylds Lane visible beyond. Pointwork in goods lines (closer)
Up starter and down innerhome A closer view of the up starter and down innerhome.
A better view of the Wylds Lane Junction area. Wylds Lane Jct
View towards Foregate St A view from a different angle of the country end of the station, and the branch towards Foregate Street.
The centre of the station, looking towards the junction. Country end of station
Double-disc backlights The backlights on the double-disc on the down platform line.

20/6/10

I was lucky enough to get a shot with the signal on the up goods line (right) at danger. A goods train had come in from Tunnel Junction from which the loco uncoupled and proceeded to run round. View towards Tunnel Jct with goods signal on
View through station with goods train shunting The train can be seen on the left in this shot through the station. The signaller has had to clear the goods line exit signal to allow the loco to propel the train partly onto the main line, in order to push it clear of the crossover between the goods lines.

12/9/10

A closer view of Shrub Hill from the overbridge south of the station, showing the ground signals and the down platform to up starter.
Before Wylds Lane's abolition, it had a junction signal here, with a worked colour-light distant further back that would clear to green if the line was clear to the station. (I don't know whether the distant was also slotted with Station box so that it could only clear if the road was set to the end of the down platform.) When WL was abolished, the distant was converted to show either single or double yellow, and this new home was added to the Station box.
Shrub Hill from the south

23/8/11

Down distant The down distant. In fact, this signal indicates the aspect of the down home only, the double-yellow aspect denoting that the home signal has been cleared. It cannot show a green.
Prior to 1973, this was Wylds Lane Junction's distant, and then had the usual yellow and green aspects.
Wylds Lane Junction, the southern entrance to the goods lines. The line on the far right is the Metal Box siding. Wylds Lane junction
Up advanced starter A closer view of the up advanced starter.
A closer view of Wylds Lane Junction. The grey hut on the right is the North Sidings Ground Frame. The Hereford Sidings (left of the 10mph sign) are now used for stabling FGW HSTs. Wylds Lane junction

30/9/11

Down innerhome A closer view of the down innerhome and the station throat.
The North Sidings Ground Frame.
Note the slotting on the post of the disc in the foreground - it is slotted between the ground frame and the signalbox, so will not clear unless both have pulled their resepective levers. When the ground frame is locked away, as here, its lever for this disc is left cleared.
North Sidings Ground Frame
Up goods line starters A better shot of the up goods line starters.

9/3/13

A new maintenance platform and signal ladders have now been added to the bracket signals at Worcester, as seen on the down main advanced starters here... Down main advanced starters with new maintenance structures
Up branch homes with new maintenance platform ...and the up branch homes.
A view across the tracks to the banjo signal (down main starter). Banjo signal
Exit disc from carriage siding The disc controlling the exit from the carriage siding line behind platforms 2 and 3. The grey casing houses the batteries for the LED-type signal lamp it now uses.
Another view of the signalbox. Signalbox
Disc off to long siding Thanks to a visiting Cotswold Venturer steam special hauled by Tangmere, I was able to see the disc for moves from the down platform back into the Long Siding cleared.
I have separately uploaded a set of photos of this train arriving, shunting and departing here into a Facebook album.

January 1978

A clearer view of the up branch homes. My train is signalled in behind another one on the up platform. Up branch homes

May 1973

Up banjo signals The banjo signals that used to control the up platform and middle lines prior to rationalisation.

April 1972

Shrub Hill Junction before the rationalisation. On the far left is the starter towards Rainbow Hill Jct, and the signal for departing from the down bay platform can be seen to the left of the down junction bracket, which had calling-on arms too. To the right of the loco shed is the down starter towards Tunnel Jct, and the rear of the up home can be seen, partially obscured by the lamp post. The bracket at the entrance to the up platform directed trains to either the platform line or the middle road. Shrub Hill Junction

Video clips

31/1/10

Here's a short clip showing the signals in operation while a train from Bristol being held at the down innerhome while it waits for an HST to Paddington to clear the platform.

A great description of the Worcester signalling is now available in former signalman Matthew Morgan's great book The Worcester Patch.

More information about the 1973 rationalisation can be found on the Railways in Worcestershire site run by the Malvern Industrial & Archaeology Circle.


Worcester index | Diagram | Henwick & Foregate St | Shrub Hill | Tunnel Jct | Norton Jct


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