PHOTO GALLERY: NORTH BRITISH RAILWAY
OPENED: 1893 CLOSED: 1950
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For every rule there is an exception, and there is more than one here! Blackhall has a rare feature for the North British Railway – a gabled roof! It is of all-timber construction – also uncommon on the NBR.
Blackhall was on the NBR’s branch from Bathgate to Morningside, controlling a junction for a freight-only branch towards Shotts; there was no station here. From this limited view, it is hard to tell whether it has any sash windows – the end ones certainly are not but it may be provided with them in key positions only, like Scotsgap Junction.
This interior view shows some interesting instruments.
- On the left a Tyer & Co one-wire, two-position block instrument is fixed to the back wall of the signal box – this is used for the single goods line to Shotts East which was operated without train staff or tickets.
- The Tyer & Co Key Token instrument is used only when Knowton box is closed, for long-section working to Fauldhouse & Crofthead.
- Adjacent to the token machine is a Tyer & Co No1 Converted Tablet instrument for working to Knowton when the signal box there is open.
- The instrument at the far end is a similar instrument for working to Castlehill Branch Junction.
The term “converted” refers to modifications to these instruments to allow tablets to be returned to the machine they were issued from. This was not originally possible and would give rise to problems if a train required to be cancelled.
Passenger services on the main line had ceased in 1930 and the signal box here closed in 1950.
With apologies for the murky images, but hopefully the interesting content justifies these being included.