Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway


Opened: 1875

Closed: —

Location code: LM98/30

Bromley Cross signal box
Photograph by John Hinson, 1989

Bromley Cross signal box is to be found on the once-busy Bolton - Blackburn line of the former Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway. These days, the line is little more than a branch line, but the box survives by dint of the fact that the train describer equipment at Manchester Piccadilly and Preston power boxes differ and are incompatible with each other. Since 1990, the box has not been classed a Block Post, but operates the train describers and supervises a foot-crossing.

The box is very old indeed. Opened in 1875, it predates the L&Y's standard equipment by many years, and was erected by a Manchester-based signalling contractor, Yardley & Smith. Very few boxes of this type now survive. Another, now closed, was to be found at Whitley Bridge.

The original 20-lever frame was renewed in 1902 using a 28-lever frame manufactured by the L&Y themselves.

Bromley Cross station and signal box
Photograph by John Hinson, 19/7/02

Bromley Cross became a fringe box to Preston power box in 1973, and the line northwards from here was singled. The frame was shortened to 16 levers in 1977, and has since been further reduced to 12 levers.

Notice in this view how the Up platform drops to what would have been its original height in the 1870s to accommodate the signal box and station buildings.

Much has changed in the lifetime of this 125+ year-old signal box, but for now it survives.

Additional notes by David Ingham

About the photographs

Comments about this article should be addressed to John Hinson

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