Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

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Violets49
Posts: 76
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 1:34 am

Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

Post by Violets49 »

Can anybody throw any light on the Signal box which once stood alongside the goods loop at Upper Greenock Station. On a thread on the Princes Pier, Greenock and Ayrshire Railway F/B page, concerning the Overton Papermill Branch, Someone posted the photo of the old Berryards Cabin from the bridge, facing west. In the distance, there is a signal cabin in a position that I don't remember. This must have meant that between that, Berryards and upper Greenock boxes, there were three boxes within a quarter of a mile (If even that) While its a wee bit away, the box looks like a standard southern division box similar to Upper Greenock. Can anybody explain its function and when it was abolished?
John Paton
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2012 4:50 pm

Re: Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

Post by John Paton »

The Signalling Record Society "Signal Box Register Vol 6: Scotland" records the following boxes at Upper Greenock.
Berryards: An 1883 box, replaced by an LMS (ex-CR design) box at an unrecorded date. Closed 12.2.67.
Upper Greenock 1: An 1883 box which closed on 21.12.1901.
Upper Greenock 2: opened 21.12.1901, closed 12.2.67.

Photo 1 below shows two boxes: Berryards in the foreground (not of CR design and therefore the 1883 Wemyss Bay Railway box); and what I assume is the 1901 Upper Greenock box referred to by the SRS.

However by 1967 Upper Greenock box was not in the position shown in photo 1 - it was at the Wemyss Bay end of the loop: see photo 2.

The box shown in photo 1 is clearly of 1901 design, and photo 2 shows a box of a similar era of CR signal box design.

Photos taken of the station in the 1950s and 60s show no box in the position shown in photo 1. There are two scenarios here: one is that there were three boxes at Upper Greenock and the SRS missed one of them. The more likely scenario is that for some reason the 1901 box was relocated, perhaps due to later alterations to the track layout. Surprisingly, the SRS book - which otherwise is amazingly detailed - does not pick this up.

Photo 3 is a 1967 view of Upper Greenock Box, and photo 4 is a 1867 view of the LMS Berryards box.

John
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Photo 1.jpg
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Violets49
Posts: 76
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 1:34 am

Re: Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

Post by Violets49 »

Thank you John. Photographs posted on Forum a while back regarding an enquiry about the water tank, showed the '1967' box as being there before WW1. (It was pretty well right in front of the house where I spent the first 21 years of my life) The photo of the original 1867 Berryards box was the one posted by a member of the Greenock Heritage society. Its the only photograph I have ever seen of a signal box in that position and even fairly early photos of Upper Greenock station show no sign of a cabin there. I used Upper Greenock regularly until it was closed in June 1967. Even ariel photos taken inn the 1920's show no sign of a box in that position. Hence my enquiry.
Violets49
Posts: 76
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 1:34 am

Re: Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

Post by Violets49 »

Considering John's reply, I believe the box in the distance of photograph 4 is the 1883 Upper Greenock box and was replaced by the box opposite the goods yard, beside the Kings dam in 1901.
John Paton
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Re: Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

Post by John Paton »

Jane,

I don't agree that the box in the background is the 1883 Wemyss Bay Railway box. The G&WBR did its own thing as regards buildings, and I suspect that a box it built in 1883 would have looked similar to Berryards in the foreground of the picture. The design of the box in the background is pure Caledonian (which took over the G&WBR in 1893), and is of the style that emerged in the later 1890s and was common on lines built then and into the 1900s. The high hipped roof, tall thin window frames, and -just about visible - the row of arched-top locking room windows on the front, all prove to me that the box was built well after the 1880s. See uploaded enlargement of the photo.

John
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Violets49
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Re: Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

Post by Violets49 »

Found this in A.J.C/Clark's book 'Caley to the Coast;.

"In September 1901,McAlpine claimed £1500 from the retention monies, indicating that the firm considered it had completed its contracted works. However, Mathieson disagreed and the board paid £1000.
Part of the works was postponed. In November 1901 The permanent signal Box at Upper Greenock was allowed to remain unfinished in the meantime, the signal box at the east end of the station being retained in use. A temporary signal cabin was to be fitted out at the west end of the platform. In December McAlpine sought another £2500 but was paid £1500, the residue being paid in May 1902, which presumably covered the permanent Signal Box."
This, presumably, is the 'Temporary' signal box. Still seems a bit extravagant for something that would have less than a year in use, unless the intention was to use some of the material in the new box.
Violets49
Posts: 76
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 1:34 am

Re: Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

Post by Violets49 »

Greenock Upper station ariel.jpg
Greenock Upper station ariel.jpg (53.04 KiB) Viewed 1429 times
Here is a crop from an ariel photo taken presumably some time in the 1920's/30's. It clearly shows that the Signal cabin was still there at that time. Although later photos from the inter war years show no sign of it.
John Paton
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Re: Signal Box at Upper Greenock Station.

Post by John Paton »

I see that the box is shown as a building on the 1912 OS but without the 'SB' designation. It has gone on the 1938 version.
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OS 1912 1.jpg
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