Sincil Bank Signal Box

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  • #165472
    AvatarMidland_Signalman
    Participant

    Would anyone be able to help with a Signal Box Diagram for Sincil Bank (Lincoln) for the early 1950’s/1960’s?

    Thank You.

    Paul

    #165501
    The SignalmanThe Signalman
    Keymaster

    Morning!

    I have posted an undated plan (which I reckon is about the period you ask for) at:
    https://signalbox.org/~SBdiagram.php?id=%201278

    It is a bit of an awkward shape for viewing on-screen but a very interesting layout and has some fascinating slotting arrangements with Pelham Street.

    John

    #165508
    AvatarMidland_Signalman
    Participant

    Thank you, John.

    That’s prefect and will be very useful. It’s been a Box I’ve been interested in for a long time.

    Paul

     

    #165527
    AvatarMike Hodgson
    Participant

    A lot of what it controlled must have needed close co-operation with Pelham Street. Its working instructions must have been quite complex and extensive.

    I’m confused as to how the place worked. There can’t have been many places which were block posts in one direction and not the other, apart from the rather different situation of those on the London end of the GN main line that had no control over trains in one direction and presumably kept half a train register.

    Is the undated Pelham Street plan from the same period? That diagram says Sincil Bank was not a Block Post on the Down Branch, so there was presumably an instrument for that line at Pelham Street.  Would that be repeated at Sincil Bank?  So what’s this Acceptance lever 37 for the Down Lincoln – movements bang road for the sidings?  Or was it used to tell Pelham Street when the line was clear from 20 Signal to the junction so that it would be in order to accept a train on that route?

    And if 42 needs to be a slot on Pelham Street’s starter, why is 33 only a slot on a distant, not on the Down Main Starter?

    #165530
    The SignalmanThe Signalman
    Keymaster

    Mike asked:

    Is the undated Pelham Street plan from the same period?

    On comparison, I would say not as the slotting arrangements differ, although this could be errors on the notes I was working from.

    I suspect the history of these odd arrangements goes back to the old box here. The later Sincil Bank only dated from 1922, the earlier box was down by the junction, near 25 catch points. This of course would have been typical for pre-track circuit days, when it was more important to be able to see trains approaching the junction. A separate crossing-keeper would have managed the gates and the new box was probably an economy measure doing away with that poor chappie’s job.

    I do not know the arrangements at the old box, but it did have 45 levers which implies it controlled the points on the Washingborough line even at that date. But it would have been more remote from them, which might have justified everything it did there being under the control of Pelham Street.

    This is all theory, but I think it quite likely it wasn’t a block post in either direction originally – perhaps it became so on the Down line to act as the equivalent of an Outer Home, allowing trains to be accepted freely whilst Pelham Street was busy with other traffic.

    Best regards,

    John

    #165532
    Steven WestSteven West
    Participant

    The undated diagram for Pelham Street Box is from before about 1957, as the gantry was replaced with a bracketed signal in the up direction and a signal with main arm and fix distant with a celling on arm below, with a route indicator to show which platform or main line for the down direction. The diagram for Sincil Bank show the new bracketed signal, (which I think was put in when Pelham bridge was built) so dates from after 1957.

    Also looking at the undated Pelham Street diagram it says ‘Not a block post on Down Branch’ but the next box is Sincil Bank on the Down Branch and Washingborough Junction on the Up Branch, so maybe it is the up branch that Sincil Bank is not a block post on? Maybe if we had a copy of Washingborough Junction Diagram it may help put the puzzle together?

    In anther post I will put in some link to two web sites with some pictures of Lincoln and the signals in question, as they may need to be cleared before the post go up.

    All the best,
    Steve

    #165534
    Steven WestSteven West
    Participant

    The two links

    First one is from the web site I have posted link to before (I have no links to this site Just a lot of info on the railways around Lincolnshire)

    http://www.davesrailpics.bravehost.com/lincolnsteam/lincolnsteam.htm

    Scroll down to the photo of A1 60123 “H A Ivatt” and it is passing under the gantry in the undated diagram, and the next photo is of 61643 with the bracketed signal in the background.

    Also from the links on this site is this from Adrian the Rock, this is his page about Pelham Street box.

    https://www.roscalen.com/signals/Lincoln/PelhamStJct.htm

    Hope this help unwrap the puzzle,

    Steve

    #165538
    The SignalmanThe Signalman
    Keymaster

    Steve wrote:

    “The undated diagram for Pelham Street Box is from before about 1957, as the gantry was replaced with a bracketed signal in the up direction and a signal with main arm and fix distant with a celling on arm below, with a route indicator to show which platform or main line for the down direction. The diagram for Sincil Bank show the new bracketed signal, (which I think was put in when Pelham bridge was built) so dates from after 1957.”

    That makes perfect sense. Incidentally, I have a date of 4/10/59 for abolition of Durham Ox crossing and replacement by the flyover.

    “Also looking at the undated Pelham Street diagram it says ‘Not a block post on Down Branch’ but the next box is Sincil Bank on the Down Branch and Washingborough Junction on the Up Branch, so maybe it is the up branch that Sincil Bank is not a block post on? Maybe if we had a copy of Washingborough Junction Diagram it may help put the puzzle together?”

    Whoops! Put that down to a clerical error. It is definitely the Up line that Sincil Bank didn’t control – I’ve adjusted (“bodged”) the diagram.  I still think there is a good chance 27 and 28 signals were slotted by Sincil Bank although not shown there as such.

    There’s really no reason for the nearest crossover and siding connection to have not been controlled by Pelham Street as they are so near, other than a lack of levers. This picture shows how close they were:

    Photo: N L Cadge (John Hinson collection), 13/8/78.

    The layout seen here is rationalised but the points by the Deltic’s cab are the siding connection previously worked by Sincil Bank lever 35.

    Best regards,

    John

    #165545
    AvatarMike Hodgson
    Participant

    There doesn’t seem to be 1/4 mile between 20 and 21 signals, so  LC acceptance on the Down must need the road clear to Pelham St 72?

    If Sincil doesn’t control the Up, how does he know when he’s got to clear his slots 42 & 41 – an indicator?  Or does he leave his slots off all the time except in emergency or if the crossovers are to be used?

    Afraid I still don’t see what 37 lever accepts.

     

    One of Adrian the Rock’s photos shows two mechanical repeaters at Pelham St for Sincil’s Up Homes, one for the Joint [Sincil 29] the other for the Grantham [Sincil 32], and both labelled No 29.  Why did Pelham Street need this?  Was Sincil required to pull his Home before Pelham cleared his starter 29?  I assume most of the freight other than GC used the Avoiding line anyway, so I don’t see much risk of long Up trains coming to a stand at Sincil’s homes, stopping the job over the flat crossing to St Marks.

    Some great photos there – I especially like the two non-peggers at Pelham St with round windows rather than the usual square.  Although the box was GNR, I remember seeing MS&LR markings on at least one of those so before 1897 and I notice High Street had this type too – maybe they were an early standard but I’ve not seen such instruments elsewhere, hope they have been preserved.

    #165552
    The SignalmanThe Signalman
    Keymaster

    Mike wrote:

    “If Sincil doesn’t control the Up, how does he know when he’s got to clear his slots 42 & 41 – an indicator? Or does he leave his slots off all the time except in emergency or if the crossovers are to be used?”

    If Sincil Bank is not a block post on the Up line, the signals would surely be left off unless required to be put to danger for use of the crossovers. Whilst the slot on the starter might seem superfluous, it would establish the interlocking principle that points should be locked by the signal ahead.

    “Afraid I still don’t see what 37 lever accepts.”

    37 will allow Pelham Street to clear 74 signal to set back into the sidings. If signalled by normal practice, 36 would have to be cleared before 37 is operated to ensure all discs were off before a setting-back move was made.

    John

    #165556
    AvatarMike Hodgson
    Participant

    Thanks for clarifying that John.  That makes perfect sense.  I suppose I’m more used to the idea of acceptance levers being used in the context of controlling routine operation over single lines in lieu of token working so it seems strange not needing an acceptance lever the other way.   This obviously all goes back before electrical control became the norm.  So would you expect 74 to be mechanically interlocked with that acceptance indicator, or would they just rely on signalman instructions back then?

    #165559
    The SignalmanThe Signalman
    Keymaster

    Mike said:

    “I assume most of the freight other than GC used the Avoiding line anyway, so I don’t see much risk of long Up trains coming to a stand at Sincil’s homes, stopping the job over the flat crossing to St Marks.”

    Judging by the photograph I posted, anything more than a three-car DMU standing at Sincil Bank’s Homes would certainly obstruct the Washingborough line junction.

    “So would you expect 74 to be mechanically interlocked with that acceptance indicator, or would they just rely on signalman instructions back then?”

    I really don’t know for certain, but the fact that it is marked as an acceptance indicator and not an acceptance release or bolt is a good hint as to the method of working.

    John

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