Railway in New Farnley

Railways, trams, buses, etc.
Chris W
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JoinedCOLON Sat 21 Apr, 2007 4:14 pm

Postby Chris W » Sat 21 Apr, 2007 10:01 pm

Does anybody have any information of a railway branch that ran into New Farnley, Leeds?

If you search for New Farnley in Google Earth and look to the left of the result, you can see a curved earthwork marked in the fields heading towards the housing estate.

I remember as a kid playing on the embankment and what remained of a track bed behind the housing estate. I also saw a picture in an old local history book that showed a loco passing over Lawns Lane at the other end of the housing estate.

Could the railway have been associated with Farnley Fireclay? I have attached a pic from Google Earth to show where I mean.
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Farnley born & bred
Phill_d
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JoinedCOLON Wed 21 Feb, 2007 6:22 am

Postby Phill_d » Mon 23 Apr, 2007 11:45 am

Hi Chris. I'm glad you've brought this up. It's something i've been trying to suss out for a while. I'll try dig out a map of the Leeds rail network as it was shortly. It amazes me how extensive it was. There were 2 branch lines at Farnley, The Farnley branch was a triangle piece of track that ran either side of the old Farnley m.p.d it ran a half mile to Dunlop & Ranken steel works where it seemed at one point to cross over Whitehall road. I've seen on maps this listed as fireclay works. There is also the Fireclay works you have shown on Google earth. I can't work out how extensive it was & if it had a mainline connection. Looking the way it ran i can't see thats possible. I've found some fireclay works pics if you have a good look through this fellas collection here http://www.lmrs.co.uk/html/alan_smith_gallery.html & i have some Farnley m.p.d/Dunlop & ranken branch line stuff here http://www.flickr.com/photos/phill_dvsn/sets/72157594397421428/detail/?page=4
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__TFMF_l3kbk5qt3eavrr55ptxm3aiw_e0819c9e-0686-4e01-ab81-89248c94f3d0_0_MaintainAspect.jpg (19.28 KiB) Viewed 2473 times
A fool spends his entire life digging a hole for himself.
A wise man knows when it's time to stop!

(phill.d 2010)
http://flickr.com/photos/phill_dvsn/




Phill_d
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JoinedCOLON Wed 21 Feb, 2007 6:22 am

Postby Phill_d » Mon 23 Apr, 2007 12:01 pm

The rail network as it was. This is only mainline railway on this view. I'll dig out the greater detail branch line/coal depot & yards map when i find it.
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__TFMF_l3kbk5qt3eavrr55ptxm3aiw_d9ec111a-4cb4-40fa-86e0-1913313b484f_0_MaintainAspect.jpg (45.93 KiB) Viewed 2473 times
A fool spends his entire life digging a hole for himself.
A wise man knows when it's time to stop!

(phill.d 2010)
http://flickr.com/photos/phill_dvsn/




FarnleyBloke
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Postby FarnleyBloke » Mon 23 Apr, 2007 2:16 pm

Hi Chris

I live in Old Farnley myself and would love to know what this is.
The Farnley branch that Phill mentions went right into the industrial estate (the old fireclay works) and the route can still be tracked on the map from the ringroad round the back of the kirkdales and over whitehall road. (I have a vague memory from a few years ago before i was interested in such things of either the bridge or the supporting walls still being there).
I'd be very surprised if it went all the way up to where you saw though.
It might be possible that there was a clay or coal mine up there as i'm sure you know Farnley is absolutely riddled with old mines and this may have been a line down into the works?

Phill_d
PostsCOLON 2638
JoinedCOLON Wed 21 Feb, 2007 6:22 am

Postby Phill_d » Mon 23 Apr, 2007 7:19 pm

Hi Farnley. As i recall it the Farnley branch line to Dunlop & Ranken was still intact as late as 1988 as i've seen a picture of it. It'd be good to find out when the line was closed-I guess the answer is when did Dunlop & Ranken stop using it? A good book to look at is Leeds rail memories no3 by Peter Rose. Farnley was quite a busy complex layout in it's day. If you look at how wide the bridge over the A66110 is you can see it carried about 8 lines but now it's reduced to 2. There were some rail sidings for Farnley steam shed a small colliery branch siding & the Leeds 'New line' flying jnct that left the mainline ran up a steep banking & crossed over Gelderd road then swang away & followed the path of the M621 to Huddersfield. You can still see the remains of the bridge over Gelderd rd if your eagle eyed. The dotted line follows the course of the Leeds 'new line' with the cross marking where you can still see the remains of the bridge today
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__TFMF_cniwku45nmjodo455t0bnl55_a856de2e-380e-4909-b5c0-c0cbafc43a01_0_MaintainAspect.jpg (52.17 KiB) Viewed 2473 times
A fool spends his entire life digging a hole for himself.
A wise man knows when it's time to stop!

(phill.d 2010)
http://flickr.com/photos/phill_dvsn/




Phill_d
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JoinedCOLON Wed 21 Feb, 2007 6:22 am

Postby Phill_d » Mon 23 Apr, 2007 7:26 pm

Farnley steam shed was in the middle of the triangle with the steel works branch running towards Whitehall rd. You can see how wide the bridge over the A6110 is but it only carries 2 lines on these days.
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__TFMF_cniwku45nmjodo455t0bnl55_23eab136-0754-4e8b-8f8e-1fd5aec9ed16_0_MaintainAspect.jpg (49.86 KiB) Viewed 2473 times
A fool spends his entire life digging a hole for himself.
A wise man knows when it's time to stop!

(phill.d 2010)
http://flickr.com/photos/phill_dvsn/




Phill_d
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JoinedCOLON Wed 21 Feb, 2007 6:22 am

Postby Phill_d » Mon 23 Apr, 2007 7:31 pm

There's some good before & after pics with a detailed map here http://www.lostrailwayswestyorkshire.co.uk/leeds%20new%20line%206.htm
A fool spends his entire life digging a hole for himself.
A wise man knows when it's time to stop!

(phill.d 2010)
http://flickr.com/photos/phill_dvsn/




Chris W
PostsCOLON 23
JoinedCOLON Sat 21 Apr, 2007 4:14 pm

Postby Chris W » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 11:50 am

Thanks for your replies!

My original pic is near the top of the street where my parents live, you can still see the track bed/embankment in cross section where the builders of the houses cut through it. It's quite an impressive sight!

There is also the remains of a building at the trackside near to where I have arrowed my original pic, maybe it was a storage shed or something?

I have asked my parents if they knew anything about this railway, and apparently on the original plans of the estate, the track was clearly marked cutting through where the houses are now, so it must have curved down towards the Fireclay works.
It is difficult to see where it went because the whole area between New Farnley and the Fireclay was extensively landfilled in the eighties unfortunately wiping out any evidence of the trackbed.

On the subject of Dunlop and Ranken, I can remember the bridge that carried the line over Whitehall road very well, we used to dare each other to walk over it as kids!!!!
There was often a diesel shunter parked on the bridge, which was great to see.

This must have been round about 1986/88 and the line was still there. Unfortunately the bridge and abutments were removed when the Lettershop Group building and surrounding land were developed. If you look now there is a new housing estate being built on the old Dunlop & Ranken site.

Here is a link to a pic of the Dunlop bridge looking towards Leeds on Leodis http://www.leodis.net/display.aspx?resourceIdentifier=2005511_74599856

You can see on my attached pic where the bridge used to be.
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Farnley born & bred

Chris W
PostsCOLON 23
JoinedCOLON Sat 21 Apr, 2007 4:14 pm

Postby Chris W » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 12:32 pm

Here is a pic of what is left of Farnley Fireclay works at the eastern end of New Farnley.

The mill chimney was still there until a couple of years ago, and unfortunately some vandals burned down the Fireclay office building last year. It stood at the side of Whitehall road near the main entrance to the industrial estate and was built from Fireclay glazed bricks.

The chippy in New Farnley was decorated inside with fireclay glazed bricks and looked really good, until they painted over them!!

Most of New Farnley only exists because of the Fireclay works, most of the houses built to house the workers.
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Farnley born & bred
Phill_d
PostsCOLON 2638
JoinedCOLON Wed 21 Feb, 2007 6:22 am

Postby Phill_d » Wed 25 Apr, 2007 3:26 pm

Cheers Chris. The Farnley fireclay & a bit of railway around Beeston are the only areas i haven't gone over with a fine tooth comb. I'll have to have a good nosey at whats left. I seem to remember an embankement in the early 80's. I'm trying to figure out where i was working @ the time to trace the area down. Did the fireclay have a mainline connection do you know. The maps i have suggests it did. Although it's out of scale & appears to run over Wortley recreation ground. It couldn't connect with the mainline that way as it's down a pretty steep cutting. Ask Rikj...This line has bugged me for a while. I can't work it out :-/
A fool spends his entire life digging a hole for himself.
A wise man knows when it's time to stop!

(phill.d 2010)
http://flickr.com/photos/phill_dvsn/





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