Seacombe, Hoylake & Deeside Railway


Opened: 1889

Closed: 1994

Location code: LM128/07

Hoylake signal boxThe Seacombe, Hoylake & Deeside Railway was a late provider of proper signalling - Hoylake box opened in 1889. The Board of Trade were not impressed when they inspected the new work either, finding the level crossing hand-worked and not interlocked, with the signal box at the other end of the station controlling the good yard. They suggested the box be moved nearer the level crossing but this advice was ignored.

However, when the line was doubled from the Birkenhead direction in 1895, they found the situation unaltered. At their first inspection (on 5th November) they demanded the gates be interlocked with the box. They returned on the 19th to check the newly completed arrangements and then stipulated once again that the box must be moved. It was only then that the box was moved to the position seen here, next to the level crossing.

The box was of standard Railway Signal Company design, although the lower row of windows normally provided on that design did not appear on any boxes in this area.

Hoylake box did not remain in the SHD's ownership for long - passing to the Wirral Railway in 1891.

Interior of Hoylake box Inside the box was a standard Railway Signal Company lever frame of twenty-one levers (the original frame had just thirteen), and as can be seen nearly all were operational. The red and yellow lever (with white band) controls an Intermediate Block Home signal at Meols which was provided after the box there was abolished.

At the far end of the frame is the gate wheel, whilst visible on the block shelf is one of the two London & North Western type block instruments. It is likely these were installed during LMS ownership, replacing one-wire, two position instruments previously in use.

Hoylake Station box closed in 1994 when the general area was resignalled.

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All photographs copyright © John Hinson unless otherwise stated