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As well as providing track and locomotive services to freight and passenger railways in North America, the New Hope and Ivyland Railroad has a history of film work and heritage excursions for visiting railway enthusiasts, utilising vintage steam engines restored to running condition. This collection of abandoned rolling stock stands neglected on a disused length of track, either harvested for parts or awaiting eventual restoration.
Founded in 1966 in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, the New Hope and Ivyland Railroad was originally known as the New Hope Branch of the Reading Company, which leased the North Pennsylvania Railroad. Plans for a rail trail between Hellertown, Upper and Lower Saucon were floated around the same time, but have been opposed by those lobbying for passenger services to be reinstated. An abandoned stretch of the North Pennsylvania Railroad is shown above with double track still in situ. Still Open - all original platform buildings and canopies have been demolished and replaced with bus shelters. Notes: By 1830 Leeds had long been an important town, having become prosperous initially through the manufacture of woollen cloth.
The Leeds & Hull Railroad Company was formed in 1824 in Leeds, and George Stephenson was appointed as engineer. Although Cross Gates is listed as opening with the line it is uncertain whether it did actually open at that time as it did not appear in company timetables until 1835 or in Bradshaw until 1840.
Before the coming of the railway, Cross Gates was a small village on the eastern outskirts of Leeds.
The original station was in a cutting and comprised two facing platforms that ran under the road bridge. Cross Gates became a junction station on 1 May 1876 with the opening of the Leeds to Wetherby line, which ran from a junction just east of Cross Gates station.
A new signal box was provided on the up side between the station and the Wetherby line junction which was now called East Junction. The new Cross Gates station instilled pride in local residents and made a good impression on visitors. Cross Gates was initially considered for the joint LNER-LMS locomotive testing station, before Rugby was chosen. Notes: Harrogate was known as 'The English Spa' in the Georgian era, after its mineral-rich waters were discovered in the sixteenth century. George Hudson was clearly keen to increase the size of his empire, and by 1845 he had taken a lease on the GNER, and he immediately withdrew the Pilmoor - Harrogate proposal to leave the way clear for the two other routes.
The Y&NMR obtained their Act for the Church Fenton - Harrogate line in 1845, and the eighteen-mile route was staked out in September of that year. In an attempt to prevent competitors from encroaching on its territory, a direct Leeds to York railway was promoted by George Hudson through the Y&NMR.
In 1849 George Hudson was forced to resign as chairman of the York & North Midland Railway following his involvement in dubious business activities. Cross Gates - Harrogate now became an important alternative route to the L&TR which was used increasingly by goods traffic and by the recently introduced Liverpool to Newcastle passenger expresses, which we now able to avoid a reversal at Leeds. In 1902 the Great Northern Railway started running express services from Kings Cross to Harrogate via the Church Fenton to Harrogate line, with three daily trains in each direction. It was linked to the London & North Eastern Railway, which was used in its construction, for supplying raw materials and for transporting away filled munitions.
ROF Thorpe Arch closed twice: once after World War II and then finally after the Korean War in April 1958.
Whereas the route between Cross Gates and Harrogate maintained a reasonably frequent weekday service the train frequency via Tadcaster was drastically reduced after WWII.
In 1961 the recently introduced diesel service between Liverpool and Newcastle was switched from the Arthington route bringing new traffic to the Wetherby line. A notable headline at the time read 'First lamb to the Beeching slaughter', cheerfully further stating 'No regular passengers object at inquiry’, which was the case, but only for the Wetherby - Church Fenton line. 1893 1:2,500 OS map shows the original layout of Cross Gates station before the line was quadrupled in 1902. 1908 1:2,500 OS map shows the layout of the station after the station was rebuilt in 1902. A Leeds train hauling clerestory stock is seen waiting in the up platform at Cross Gates station before May 1904. Cross Gate station was at its peak in the Edwardian era as the area developed as a commuter suburb of Leeds. An eastbound express services passes through Cross Gates station on the fast line in 1961. In this view east in 1970 from the access ramp to the up platform, the fast lines appear to have been recently lifted and the down platform buildings and canopy recently demolished with warning signs on the platform requesting passengers to keep clear. Notes: Edgware was built as a through station on the assumption that the line would be extended to Watford as planned. As built, the station had two side platforms with the main building at the west end of the down platform. Once it was clear that the Watford extension would not be built, the up platform was not used after 1872 and was soon demolished. There are many published maps showing the Northern Line extensions, and not all of them get it right. On the north side of the up line a short siding veered of to the north passing over a 40ft turntable to reach a single-road timber engine shed. The coming of the underground in 1926 brought an influx of new housing to the area with a subsequent dramatic increase in the local population. After the passenger service was suspended in 1939, the booking office remained open to sell tickets which could be used on the replacement bus service. The passenger service was never reinstated, but the station remained open for goods traffic, and the parcels office in the station building remained in use until the building was demolished in 1961. Both the platform and the goods shed and cranes remained into the 1970s, with a scrap yard occupying the yard.
The following year, the Midland Railway received authority to build a line between Bedford and St Pancras which would provide a quicker route into central London from the Mill Hill area.
Both proposals were approved by Parliament in 1864, as was a further branch from Finchley to High Barnet in 1866. The main line between Seven Sisters Road and Edgware proved more costly than expected with tunnelling required at Highgate and a high viaduct taking it over the Dollis Brook. The new line was double-track between Seven Sisters Road and Highgate and single-track beyond Highgate, with passing loops at Finchley & Hendon. The line was doubled between Highgate and East Finchley on 1 December 1867 and to Finchley & Hendon on 1 November 1869, prior to the opening of the High Barnet branch on 1 April 1872. The junction with the Edgware line made through running difficult as there was no direct connection between the down line and the original single track. In an attempt to generate additional income, a halt was opened at The Hale on 11 June 1906. The rail-motors proved unpopular with passengers as they gave a rough ride with continuous vibration.
All of these lines would be incorporated into the Northern Line, and a new connection with the Northern City line at Finsbury Park would provide a fast and frequent service of electric trains into central London. The New Works Plan was adopted, and work on the electrification and new infrastructure started alongside the steam service which continued to operate. By the outbreak of war in 1939 work to integrate the Edgware line into the Northern Line was progressing well.
After 1941 the various unfinished Northern Line extensions were removed from subsequent Underground maps, although they reappeared between 1946 and 1949. London Transport had every intention of completing their New Works after the war, hoping to finish the line between Mill Hill East and Edgware in 1948 with the extension to Bushey Heath being opened the following year. All of the uncompleted Northern Line extensions were officially abandoned in February 1954. The second track between Mill Hill East and The Hale had been lifted in 1941, but the line remained open for freight traffic and remained steam-hauled until December 1961. Despite closure of The Hale in 1939 the booking office at Mill Hill Broadway was still selling tickets from Mill Hill (The Hale) until the late 1960s.
One of the two GNR rail-motors brought in to operate the shuttle service from 19 February 1906.
69506 entered service in December 1920 having been built by the North British Locomotive Co. In 1853, the station only had a stationmaster, Titus Waddington earning £50 per annum. The first section of the Y&NMR opened on 20th May 1839 between York and a junction with the Selby line at Gascoigne Wood, with the remaining section to Normanton opening on 1st July 1840.
The L&S offered a direct route into Leeds from the east while Hudson's longer route into Leeds ran through Castleford via the Whitwood and Methley Junctions. Having completed the York line, George Hudson turned his attention to Harrogate, proposing a branch to the town via Wetherby from a junction with the Y & NM at Normanton. Thirsk and Northallerton were early additions to the railway map as part of the Great North of England Railway which, as planned, would run from York to Darlington and then on to Newcastle upon Tyne. The line opened between York and Darlington to goods traffic on 4th January 1841 and to passengers on 31st March.
The Leeds & Thirsk Railway was incorporated by Act on 21st July 1845 to serve Harrogate and to provide an alternative route from Leeds to the north east to break George Hudson's monopoly of rail transport in that area. Intermediate stations were opened with the line at Wath (later renamed Melmerby), Baldersby and Topcliffe. The architecture for the Leeds and Thirsk is attributed to Thomas Grainger but with considerable involvement by John Bourne.
In 1848 the L&T made a further attempt to extend their line northwards from Melmerby to Northallerton, and this time they were successful in receiving parliamentary approval. At this time, a change of name to the Leeds Northern Railway seemed appropriate, and this was sanctioned by Parliament in 1851. YN&B with a low level station being built at Northallerton adjacent to the existing station. The line from Melmerby to Northallerton was initially single track and was not doubled until 1901. On 1st January 1856 a spur was opened allowing services to run from the Stockton line onto the YN & B where they called at the main (high level) Northallerton station.
When the Leeds & Thirsk first opened, the Great North of England Railway was not too concerned so long as traffic from the south of England was routed via their line to the north.
Northallerton Low Level station finally closed on 10th February 1901 when a new link, the Cordio Loop from Cordio Junction on the Leeds Northern to South Junction on the old YN&B, was opened on the same day to allow trains from the Sinderby line to run into the main station. In July 1922, Bradshaw's Railway Guide shows 14 down trains and 13 up trains calling on weekdays at Ripon, the principal station on the line, with three on Sundays; however these did not stop at all stations.
At the same time, emergency platforms were built immediately south of Romanby Gates level crossing.
The old Leeds Northern survived until nationalisation with the exception of Newby Wiske station which was closed as an economy measure in both wars, finally closing on 11th September 1939. North of Ripon, a daily freight working shunted the yard at Ripon then worked on to Melmerby, where there was an MoD ordnance depot. The story has a twist in that shortly after closure a serious accident took place just south of Thirsk on 31st July 1967.
For all too brief a time, the line had proved its value as an emergency route, and voices were raised in a vain endeavour to keep it open. Today the southern section of the old Leeds Northern between Leeds and Harrogate is still open, although it now follows a former branch line to York instead of continuing through Ripon to Northallerton.
Click here to see photographs of a journey between Harrogate and Northallerton on 4th March 1967, the last day of public service. During the 19th and 20th centuries, the national rail system was extremely popular and heavily used. Australian trains carried goods and passengers around the country, as rail lines provided much faster travel times than alternatives before motor cars became popular in the 1950's. From Terowie to Tailem Bend, from Manoora to Mount Lofty, communities were left to deal with their own stations as they wished.
While Mount Barker is no longer used as part of the national rail system, the station building and rail lines have found a whole new life as the centre of the Steamranger Heritage Railway network.
Steamranger operate a fantastic collection of heritage Australian trains from Mount Barker through the Hills and around the Fleurieu Peninsula. Unfortunately you cannot catch a Steamranger train in Adelaide, but Mount Barker is an easy 20 minutes drive along the freeway - or you can catch a bus from Adelaide that terminates at the station. You can read more here about their Cockle train, which operates between Victor Harbour and Goolwa. If you are enthusiastic about railways and South Australian trains, have a browse through the Steamranger enthusiast's website too. It's great to see that the Mount Barker station has survived its first hundred years and is still a focus for the community. The station at Littlehampton is perhaps typical of many of the smaller stations scattered about the railways of Australia.
It is a simple construction of timber and corrugated iron, and is the only relic of what must have been a bustling place a hundred years ago. The quantity of eggs now being dispatched from the Balaklava district is said to equal a ton a day. Australian rail enthusiasts have often commented about how disused railway stations are wasted and left to rot even if they are heritage listed.


But the Nairne railway station has had a reprieve - it has been adopted by volunteers from the Lions Club of Nairne. The volunteers have lovingly maintained the railway station over many years, and restored it to hold a useful place in its community.
Unfortunately the old stone goods shed opposite the station building is constantly under attack from vandals. But at least the 130 year old station building survives, to continue serving community it has served for so long. Thanks for that tip - yes I touched on Aldgate in my article on the Mount Lofty station, although I haven't been there. I have seen a little of the Strathalbyn station when I went to the market, but need to go back for better photos. Stations at Aldgate and Strathalbyn are also occupied & well used by community organisations.
WeekendNotes will notify you of the best free community events, concerts, exhibitions, cinema, festivals, and markets in your town or city. But as photographer Charles Tilford discovered, not all its locomotives remain in working order.
With their paint long peeled away and sporting a liberal coating of moss, the inhabitants of this de facto train graveyard have taken on the earthen shades of the autumn leaves around them. I just moved to this area and would love to check out these cars in person; do you know where abouts on the railway they are located? By 22 September 1834 a single complete line of track had been built, and the railway was officially opened.
On 29 May 1839 the first section of George Hudson's York & North Midland Railway opened. Hudson's first act was to close the line to passengers west of Milford (which included the stations at Cross Gates, Garforth, Micklefield); despite his line being 4 miles longer passengers now had no choice but to use it. The main station buildings were on the down side and comprised a single-storey range of brick buildings with a hipped slate roof and tall chimneys.
A new station at Cross Gates was authorised on 11 February 1870 at a cost of £807, but it was not built until the line between Neville Hill and Cross Gates was quadrupled in 1902. The 1904 Handbook of Stations lists only limited goods facilities - general goods, parcels and livestock and no crane - so it is a fair assumption that the yard remained unchanged at this time.
They could admire the attractive gardens, hanging baskets and tidy platforms which ensured that the station won a number of prizes.
138,421 tickets were sold that year, and the main freight handled was iron ore, with 269 tons being dispatched, but only 6 wagons of livestock were loaded at the station. Under British Railways (North Eastern Region) management the station received totem name signs, probably before 1957, but gas lighting and the LNER running-in nameboards were retained. The down platform canopy was demolished c1970; its replacement was a small brick building with a narrow canopy.
From Monday to Saturday the daytime service is half-hourly to Leeds, with most services going beyond to Bradford Interchange and onwards to Blackpool North or Huddersfield.
Cross Gates - from Pit village to Commuter Suburb from East Leeds History & Archaeology Society web site. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries the chalybeate waters (containing iron) were a popular health treatment, and the influx of wealthy, but sickly, visitors contributed significantly to the wealth of the town. Having opened their main line between York and Darlington in 1841 they proposed a branch from Pilmoor, 16 miles north of York, to Harrogate via Boroughbridge and Ripon. It was opened in two stages, with the first 13-mile section between Church Fenton and a temporary terminus at Spofforth opening on 10 August 1847. The construction of the line was authorised in 1846 and was to run from Copmanthorpe on the outskirts of York to Cross Gates, several miles east of Leeds, joining the Church Fenton to Harrogate line between Tadcaster and Stutton.
The collapse of railway investment in 1849 resulted in the abandonment of the project, but a ten-arch stone viaduct over the River Wharfe at Tadcaster had already been constructed.
Just short of Brunswick Tunnel another new line was built to join the line from Starbeck enabling trains to run into a new central station which opened on 1 August 1862. A new station called Penda's Way, between Scholes and Cross Gates, was opened on 5 June 1939 to serve the growing residential development in that area. The winter 1937-8 LNER timetable showed 7 trains from Church Fenton to Leeds via Tadcaster on Monday to Friday in each direction, whilst there were twice as many between Leeds, Wetherby and Harrogate. Stations had received minimal investment since Nationalisation, amounting to little more than painting the nameboards in BR(NE) tangerine and installing totem name signs at Wetherby. At Wetherby station alone, 14 staff were employed attending to the needs of only 30 passengers per day. In 1965 it was estimated that by 1981 the town's population would double to 12,000 and this estimate proved quite accurate.
Some parts of the former railway tracks between Wetherby and Leeds have been used for housing development at Bardsey and Collingham Bridge.
At the time the station opened, Cross Gates was a small pit village that warranted only a small wayside station.
There is a new booking office on the bridge and new platforms, buildings, wide canopies and footbridge. Both platforms were provided with waiting rooms, which are seen at the bottom of the ramp in front of the high retaining wall. The up platform also has a small concourse protected by a secondary canopy at the bottom of the ramp. By this time the goods yard had been substantially expanded with the addition of a large brick goods shed which is seen at a higher level on the right. The goods yard above was still open at this time but, with much of its traffic lost to road transport, its days were numbered, and three years later it would close. A DMU for Hull is departing from the down platform while a steam train hauls an express through on the fast line.
The new lamp posts and buildings have now been replaced and what we now see is, in fact, a second generation of bus shelters. The site is now occupied by Premier House a public car park and the Broadwalk shopping centre. This did nothing to generate new passenger traffic as commuters now had a faster and more convenient route into central London. The booking office closed on 14 April 1940 when ticket sales were transferred to the underground station. At that time steam traction was also withdrawn with diesels taking over for the final few years. The site was cleared some time after 1975, and during the 1980s any remaining evidence of the station was swept away during the construction of the Broadwalk shopping centre. It was assumed that the north end of the line would be doubled at a later date so some structures, including the viaduct over the Dollis Brook, were built to a width that would accommodate a second track. To accommodate the extra traffic expected to be generated by this branch, Finchley & Hendon was rebuilt with an additional platform face which allowed services that had previously terminated at Highgate to be extended. It was reconfigured in June 1896 which allowed more through services to run to Edgware, but there were never more than six in each direction. The stations remained open for the sale of tickets which could be used on replacement buses.
A second track, complete with conductor rail, had been laid as far as The Hale, and a second platform had been built there.
Despite these optimistic expectations no further work was undertaken, and in 1950 London Transport announced that that the route between Brockley Hill (north of Edgware) and Bushey Heath would not be built as it contravened Green Belt regulations. These were valid on the 240 bus and differed from ordinary Underground tickets by having the name underlined. The west end of the platform and the station building were demolished when the office block,seen in the background, was built. The platform is lost under the office block (Premier House) and the public car park behind it.
The site of down platform is in an arable field and the site of the up platform is the Baldersby Plant Centre. A two- storey building at the back of the down platform incorporated the stationmaster's house and a single -storey booking office. This controlled the crossing and access to the goods yard which was located on the down side behind the station building. 5,206 tickets were sold that year, and the main freight handled was potatoes, with 1031 tons being dispatched and barley with 533 tons. The stationmaster's house and booking office was never converted into a private residence, standing empty at least until the mid 1960s. This proposed line would join the North Midland at Normanton, a few miles east of Leeds, and it received its Act of Parliament in 1837.
A spur to Methley Junction, giving access to Leeds via a working arrangement with the North Midland, was opened on 27th July 1840, followed by a southbound curve from the L&S at Gascoigne Wood. The middle section, between Croft and Darlington, was authorised by Parliament on 4th July 1837, and work started near Croft on 25th November 1837.
With George Stephenson he planned and carried out the extension of the line to Newcastle, and by 1844 he had control of over a thousand miles of railway.
Although the line was built in four years it was opened in stages, as the southern section of the line was more demanding of the engineer’s skills. Initially this opened to mineral traffic only on 5th January 1848 and, after the line had passed its Board of Trade inspection, a passenger service was introduced on 1st June 1848 (although it is likely some passengers had been carried before this date). This opened on 1st September 1848 with intermediate stations at Wormald Green, Nidd Bridge and Harrogate (renamed Starbeck in August 1857).
The latter became resident engineer of the L&T in 1846 and sole engineer in 1852 when Grainger died in an accident on the line. The partially completed earthworks to the north of Melmerby were purchased from the Northern Counties Union Railway formed part of the new route.
Work began at Melmerby the same year with a junction off the Leeds Northern striking north for Northallerton and an under-line bridge on the York Newcastle & Berwick Railway as it was now called.
The section north of Northallerton was to be the most expensive endeavour, but is beyond the scope of this brief history.
The extension opened on 2nd June 1852 between Melmerby (renamed from Wath) and Northallerton Town, which was on the east side of the YN & B.
At this time Northallerton Town was closed, but the low level station was retained as the northern terminus for local services to Melmerby. A second, the Longlands Loop, running from Longlands Junction on the YN&B, under the Cordio Loop to Boroughbridge Road Junction on the Leeds Northern opened only for down (northbound) traffic on that day. If one of the under-line bridges was destroyed during an air attack it could block all north - south traffic through the town. After WW2 both passenger and freight traffic was in decline and Bradshaw's October 1951 Railway Guide shows 13 down trains and 11 up trains calling at Ripon with five on Sundays. Pickhill, Baldersby and Topcliffe closed on 14th September 1959, and the line from Melmerby to Thirsk closed completely and was lifted. This closed at the end of 1968 with the last freight working on 3rd October 1968 with the final trip along that stretch of line on 31st December to collect the last wagons. This closed all but the up slow line on the ECML, and the resulting chaos can easily be imagined. However, serious accidents on the ECML were so few that it would have been folly, in terms of maintenance alone, to keep the route.
In recent years a feasibility study has been undertaken into the possibility of reopening the line between Harrogate and Northallerton. The original low down platform is seen on the left with its replacement on the far side of the level crossing. They were once an immensely important part of South Australian history, but for many their time has now passed. The cockle train has the oldest steel rail lines of any railway in Australia, but your mind is more likely to be occupied with the beautiful ocean views as you pass Port Elliot. There were factories producing bricks, jam, sauces, bacon, wattle extract, a brewery and a sawmill in Littlehampton by 1890. People in adjoining gardens gaze curiously at any sign of life as one walks along the tracks. Not only do the Lions Club use the station for their own meetings, but it is also available for other community organisations to use too. Selby had grown in importance as a port since the construction of the Selby Canal and had become an important inland east coast port for coastal and foreign trade. The scheme was revived in 1828 when the shareholders agreed that the railway should be built as far as Selby with the remainder of the journey to Hull being made by steam packet. After the station at Marsh Lane in Leeds there were stations at Cross Gates, Garforth, Micklefield, Milford, and Hambleton. It ran from York to a point just to the east of Milford station where a short chord connected it to the Leeds & Selby Railway. In 1848 the line west of Milford was closed to freight as well; Marsh Lane station in Leeds was at that time still a terminus, and so useless for through traffic to Manchester and beyond. At this time about 80 trains a day stopped at Cross Gates providing a frequent service to Leeds, and enabling Cross Gates to become a much sought-after place of residence. He then took an active part in the promotion of the route and commissioned George Stephenson to construct the line.
There were intermediate stations at Stutton, Tadcaster, Newton Kyme, Thorp Arch and Wetherby, with passengers being conveyed the last five miles into Harrogate by horse-drawn omnibus.


The need for the line evaporated with the opening of the Micklethorpe to Church Fenton line in 1869 although the viaduct did eventually see rail traffic in the form of a siding serving a flour mill on the east side of the river. On 5 May 1866 The York Herald reported that the Leeds - Wetherby Railway Bill had been put before the Select Committee of the House of Commons for a single line to run from the Leeds and Selby branch, near Cross Gates, to the Church Fenton and Harrogate Branch at Wetherby - a length of 10 miles 66 chains.
10,000 people, mainly women, were employed there at the height of production, and it is believed to have had 619 buildings. Special workmen's trains ran from Leeds and Bradford Exchange and from as far afield as Hull and Doncaster on Monday to Saturday calling at the four halts. In the early 1960s George Moore, a local businessman, bought most of the site and the development of the area as a trading estate began.
At the time of the Beeching enquiry, there was a maximum of eight passengers on the one train a day between Church Fenton and Leeds via Wetherby, with no regular passengers. There were ambitious plans to relieve growing congestion through the town centre and on the A58 and A661 by converting the disused railways into relief roads.
When the line was quadrupled the railway cottages had to be demolished, and a new terrace of cottages has been built to the south of the station. The building on the up platform has six rooms which include a general waiting room, ladies’ waiting room and toilets. The yard had a relatively small two-ton capacity crane mounted on a dock in front of the shed. New lamp standards, of an Eastern Region style largely confined to Yorkshire, have been installed at the back of the platform, one sporting a corporate identity sign that replaced the tangerine totem signs. The line would have encroached into LNWR territory which could have led to animosity between the LNWR and the GNR. After passing through a large brick goods shed it terminated just short of the station building.
There was also a 5-ton crane: photographic evidence from the 1970s shows two cranes, although one could be associated with the later scrap yard on the site.
There was, however, an increase in goods traffic, especially during the construction of new housing when new sidings were provided to handle incoming building materials. Today the course of the line can be traced as it leaves the goods yard, but it is securely gated and is now used as a staff entrance to Edgware Underground depot. Without the line to Bushey Heath, it was felt that construction costs of completing the upgrade of the Finchley – Edgware line would not be recouped by expected traffic, so this too was dropped.
The building on the right in the foreground is the weigh office which is at the entrance to the goods yard. The up platform was taken out of use in 1872 and had probably already been demolished by the time this map was published. The layout of the yard has been drastically altered especially around the coal yard where new coal bins have been provided. The boiler, cab and footplate were built on a 4-wheeled power bogie, whilst the coal bunker was built on the coach frame.
4649 was built in 1914 at Doncaster works and delivered new to Kings Cross shed in June carrying the GNR No 1649. First numbered 1727 by the GNR, it received the number 4727 when it passed to the LNER and was renumbered again in 1946 to 9506.
At this time there was a scrap yard in the goods yard and the platform area was a convenient dump for old tyres. Some platform edge stones have been used as kerb stones at the entrance to the plant centre. The southern section of the line was authorised on 30th June 1837, and then work was concentrated on this section in order to join up with the Y & NMR which was already under construction, with the two companies sharing a joint station at York. Railway companies were not averse to taking members of the public along parts of their lines as they were being built as long as the company had stock and locomotives to so do: such clandestine operations were quite common. The stations on the L&T were nothing of merit, and only three of them were permanent structures at its opening, namely Thirsk, Topcliffe and Starbeck. Despite this opposition, a total of 2 ¼ miles was completed, including a section of earthworks north of Melmerby.
Intermediate stations were provided at Newby Wiske and Sinderby (and further stations between Northallerton and Stockton). The avoiding line was lifted by the end of 1947, but the emergency platforms remained at least until the 1960s for use by trains bound for Teesside during engineering works on the East Coast main line. Baldersby had three down trains and four up trains, with two on Sunday, while Sinderby had two down trains and one up train, and no Sunday service. Nidd Bridge Wormald Green and Sinderby closed on 18th June 1962, but all remained open for goods traffic - Sinderby until November 1963 and the other two until August 1964. Ripon station remained open for goods traffic arriving from the south until 5th September 1969, with a private siding remaining in use after that date.
The situation was made no better when attempts to operate the slow line as a dual direction line under a pilot proved to be chaotic. The original low platform would have been in the centre of the picture and the stationmaster's house and main station building to the left. A truckload of felloes (wheel rims), weighing over 8 tons, was sent from the same station to the Mile-End goods station for city firms. As early as 1814 the Leeds Mercury had printed letters promoting the idea of a railway from Leeds to Selby. The shareholders passed the proposal at a general meeting in Leeds on 20 March 1829, and the Leeds and Selby Railway Company was formed.
Both lines of track were complete by 15 December 1834, on which date the railway began to take goods traffic. Passenger services were reinstated in 1850, but freight continued to run to Leeds via Castleford and not Marsh Lane. The new station possessed two wide facing, but slightly staggered, platforms, with two fast lines running between them. The station was the common thread of local history providing the means for a pit village that grew around the original wayside halt in 1834, to develop into a desirable commuter suburb by the early twentieth century. The Arndale Shopping Centre, which opened in 1968, is now located on the site of the goods yard. Having completed the York line, George Hudson then turned his attention to Harrogate, proposing a branch to the town from a junction with the Y & NM at Church Fenton, ten miles south of York. The only engineering feature of note was a two-span iron girder bridge over the River Wharfe between Newton Kyme and Thorp Arch. The estate was later owned by Thorp Arch Limited Partnership, but is now known as Thorp Arch Estate and is owned by the trustees of Hanover Property Unit Trust.
Although Cross Gates has a fair sized goods yard there are only two sidings serving a cattle dock on the north side of the yard.
The original signal box has also been demolished and a new one provided between the station and the junction with the Wetherby line to the east.
The goods yard is behind the fence at the top of the retaining wall; the large brick goods shed had not been built at this time. Main line steam haulage ended in August 1968, and by 1970 the fast lines had been lifted and the down platform buildings and canopy would be demolished.
Despite this, the station has continued to win awards, most recently for 'Best Kept Railway Station' in Yorkshire in June 2006.The platforms have been shortened by the addition of barriers.
This time a 59-seat Sentinel, The Rising Sun, was used, but it proved as unpopular as its predecessors and was withdrawn the following year. All the new lines were shown as 'under construction' on LPTB pocket maps from 1938 onwards. The station building has now been demolished, and the former passenger lines have been cut back leaving just the east end of the platform intact. As well as the loco water tank, there were extra larger tanks located between the carriage and the underframe.
It received its final number in 1948 and lasted in service until May 1961 when it was withdrawn from 34E, New England shed and cut up at Doncaster works a month later.
The seven others were nothing short of basic, with low platforms and simple timber shelters.
Northallerton Low Level opened in December 1854 and an additional station at Pickhill was added in March 1875. A radical solution was to reopen the Leeds Northern route from Harrogate to Northallerton for northbound trains only, (southbound trains continued on the slow line).
The condemnation of the road bridge at Sinderby may have been a management move to ensure that the line could never reopen. The northern section of the Leeds Northern between Northallerton and Stockton also remains open although all intermediate stations have closed with the exception of Yarm (reopened on a new site) and Eaglescliffe. The booking office, a rectangular brick building with a hipped slate roof, was on the bridge on the down side from where two long ramps ran down to the platform.
The first generation of bus shelters has given way to more modern bus shelters in recent years.
The viaduct is Grade II listed and is owned by Tadcaster Town Council; it now carries a public footpath and cycleway. By 1961 there was only one local morning train between Church Fenton and Leeds via Wetherby, and another, also in the morning, from Leeds to Tadcaster, which ran only as far as Thorp Arch on Saturday. A new station called Hornbeam Park opened just south of this junction on 24 August 1992. Initially the goods yard remained the same but within a few years it was expanded with new sidings, a second dock with a crane and a goods shed.
The goods yard has already closed and the Arndale Centre, which opened in 1968, is under construction. At the east end of this siding there was a brick building with a coaling stage below and a 13,500 gallon water tank on top. A brick building in the yard is built from the debris from the demolished station buildings. The new up platform was on the site of the earlier platform, but the new down platform was on the opposite side of the level crossing. As signal boxes had been shut and battery boxes removed, no interlock detectors could be operated, and the first priority was to replace batteries.
George Hudson had his own route into Leeds (through Castleford via Whitwood and Methey Junctions) accessed via a working arrangement with the North Midland Railway. In the 1990s proposals were put forward to reopen the southern end of the Wetherby line as a single track to the A64 York Road at Scholes where a new park-and-ride station would be built. Tenders for the project were invited in November 1871 and seven firms responded with bids. The most notable addition to the estate is the Northern Reading Room, Northern Listening Service and Document Supply Centre of the British Library, occupying what was the locomotive shed and engineering department. He also remarks that the dieselisation of the service in January 1959 could have increased the use of the trains, but without improved frequency of trains that some neighbouring lines enjoyed, there was really no incentive to use them. The saw mill is still shown but not named, so the building might have been put to other uses by this time.
Also, there was a chain and pulley system along the roof of the carriage, to enable the driver to open and close the regulator. The original booking office was retained, and timber waiting shelters were built on both platforms. On the same day as the accident, a train had been sent from Darlington with the required batteries and pilot man and all nine signal boxes and cabins were reinstated. These trolleys were based at remote outstations so that the track worker could travel easily to their work sites.
The Leeds & Selby had the potential to offer opportunities to rival companies, as well as a competing route to Hudson's. A new island platform was to be provided in the centre road at Cross Gates but nothing ever came of this scheme. By 1963 only the 7.44 am departure from Church Fenton to Leeds was shown in the public timetable, the train actually having run from Leeds via Garforth. Church Lane has now been renamed Station Road (named after the Northern Line station rather than the GNR station). The rail-motors were not popular with passengers as they gave a rough ride, and they were moved elsewhere with a few months. Men were found to operate them on 12-hour shifts until the emergency passed on 2nd August. In June 2006 Cross Gates won the award for 'Best Kept Railway Station' in Yorkshire, major strides in its refurbishment having been made.
Special local bell codes were used by the signalmen to warn the next section box that men were working on the line and that reduced speed had to be applied by passing trains. In 1961 there were four trains between Harrogate and Leeds in each direction, with two additional trains between Wetherby and Leeds and one in the opposite direction. Long distance traffic between Leeds and Newcastle had continued to use the line, but this ended with the completion of the quadrupling of the East Coast main line in 1959. The earlier twenty freight trains between Harrogate and Wetherby (in each direction) had fallen to five by 1960.



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