Ironbridge and Broseley

An Eastbound passenger train calls at Iron Bridge and Broseley in August 1961 (Sellick Collection)
Another view of the station looking westward in 1963
An aerial view of Ironbridge in 1934, looking West. The station is visible on the left near the famous Iron Bridge, and the Albert Edward Bridge can just be seen at the top. Image from Britain from Above
Next stations pre-closure
Towards Hartlebury and Kidderminster Towards Shrewsbury
Coalport (2 miles)
via Jackfield Halt (from 1934)
Buildwas (1½ miles)

Ironbridge and Broseley, re-named "Iron Bridge and Broseley" in 1895 and often abbreviated to simply "Ironbridge", was a station situated 27 miles from Hartlebury and 13¾ miles from Shrewsbury.

Contents

Location

Ironbridge, like all the stations north of Victoria Bridge, was built on the west bank of the River Severn. The river runs almost due east-west at Ironbridge, and thus the station was situated on what was effectively the south bank, immediately south of Abraham Darby’s bridge after which the town was named. The Gorge is very narrow at this point, and much of the station lay on an embankment and plateau supported by a 15 metre high retaining wall.[1]

The station was probably used more by the people of Broseley, situated about ½ mile away on the same side of the river, and the site of tile and clay pipe making industries. The 1861 census showed the population of Broseley as 4,724, larger than Ironbridge (3,154). Ironbridge town itself is on the north bank, and crossing the bridge required payment of a toll until 1950, a fact that undoubtedly discouraged passengers from Ironbridge using the station.[1] Nearby Coalbrookdale, also on the north bank, had its own station on the Wellington-Much Wenlock line.

OS Map IronBridge.JPG

History

At opening on 1 February 1862, the station was the second of five crossing points south of Shrewsbury (Buildwas being the first and Bridgnorth the next). Like all the main stations, Ironbridge had a goods yard and goods shed, although the latter was built of wood rather than stone.[2]

The station had a footbridge, adjacent to the station building, connecting the two platforms. The station building was on the platform to the north of the line (nearer Ironbridge), while the goods shed was to the south of the line. A road level crossing was situated immediately west of the station; this can be seen beneath the carriages in the Sellick photograph. The road led to Bower Yard and also to the Iron Bridge.

A Great Western Type 5 brick signal box was commissioned in 1894 at a cost of around £1,545.[3] This was located adjacent to the level crossing on the west side.

On 9 November 1895 the name of the station was changed from 'Ironbridge and Broseley' to 'Iron Bridge and Broseley' on the recommendation of the General Manager.[4] The reason for this is unclear as the town is normally referred to as 'Ironbridge'; however the latter name for the station continued in use as may be seen in working timetables and on the running-in board in the Sellick photograph.

Provision of an additional goods siding at a cost of £90 was authorised in April 1908, and the signal box interlocking frame, level crossing gates, point and signal connections were renewed in 1916.[4]

On 25 November 1956 the signal box at Ironbridge was closed and the down line and platform were taken out of use, ending the station’s use as a crossing point.[5] By 1962 the upper floor of the box had been removed and a small ground frame was installed outside the door.

The station closed to passenger traffic on 9 September 1963 when through traffic ended on the Severn Valley Line between Shrewsbury and Bewdley. However the goods yard remained open until 1 December 1963.[6]

The site today has become a pay and display car park for Ironbridge visitors, with few traces of the station remaining.

Traffic statistics

GWR Traffic statistics for Ironbridge, selected years prior to 1939[7]
Passenger Traffic Freight Traffic
Year Tickets issued Parcels despatched Revenue (£) Tons received & despatched Revenue (£) Total revenue (£)
1903 29,845 19,240 3,314 75,457 24,895 28,209
1913 24,247 19,681 2,719 65,253 18,948 21,667
1923 32,384 17,827 4,742 62,216 29,153 33,895
1933 19,195 21,354 3,276 40,780 18,322 21,596
1938 23,637 23,712 3,151 27,170 11,969 15,120

Historic maps of Ironbridge and Broseley station

  • 1883 map with original 1862 passing loops
  • 1902 map with 1894 signal box
  • 1927 map with additional goods siding

See also

References