London, Midland & Scottish Railway


Opened: 1935

Closed: 1987

Location code: LM45/06

Kettering Junction signal boxThe London, Midland & Scottish Railway made a small modification to its initial box design, shown at Madeley, in 1935. The corner fillets in the top of the window panes, which echoed Midland habits right back to the 1870's. were abandoned in 1933 in the interests of economy, resulting in a much plainer appearance. A small change indeed, but it did represent the removal of the only decorative feature and left the design looking distinctly bland.

Kettering Junction opened in 1935, replacing both the old junction box and the nearby cabin at Pytchley. The box controlled running junctions between the four lines and also the divergence of the Huntingdon Branch. The additional staircase and platform is provided to facilitate the exchange of single-line tablets with drivers.

Inside Kettering Junction boxInside was a well-kept 45-lever REC pattern frame, similar to that at Barrow Hill Junction controlling the layout. South of here, the running lines were named Passenger and Goods (the latter being worked by Permissive Block) whilst northwards they were Fast and Slow lines, for progress through Kettering Station and divergence to run via Leicester or Manton.

The block instruments reflect this - being, left to right: Slow Lines (Kettering Station), Goods Lines (Finedon), Fast Lines (Kettering Station) and Passenger Lines (Finedon). They are a curious mixture of old and new. The presence of the LNW permissive instrument on the Goods Lines is explained on the West Hampstead page.

Notice that the levers are provided with dull steel versions of the Midland Railway's brass badges.

This box is the subject of a computer simulation available from PC Rail which is absolutely excellent with the sound of the bells and levers, although a little artistic licence has been applied to the signalling arrangements.

Kettering Junction closed in 1987 and is now controlled from Leicester panel.

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All photographs copyright © John Hinson unless otherwise stated