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Bromley Cross railway station (including signal box and low level platform)

A Grade II Listed Building in Bromley Cross, Bolton

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.614 / 53°36'50"N

Longitude: -2.4107 / 2°24'38"W

OS Eastings: 372929

OS Northings: 413131

OS Grid: SD729131

Mapcode National: GBR CVLN.W6

Mapcode Global: WH97N.YF78

Entry Name: Bromley Cross railway station (including signal box and low level platform)

Listing Date: 7 April 2015

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1422397

Location: Bolton, BL7

County: Bolton

Electoral Ward/Division: Bromley Cross

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Bolton

Traditional County: Lancashire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater Manchester

Church of England Parish: Bradshaw St Maxentius

Church of England Diocese: Manchester

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Bolton

Summary

Small, rural station building of 1859 set on an early, low level platform with an adjacent signal box of 1875. The listing does not extend to the later high level platforms, nor to the level crossing or altered Station Master's house.

Description

Railway station, 1859, with later alterations including a signal box of 1875, for the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway.

MATERIALS: the station building is of local, rough-tooled sandstone with smooth-tooled stone dressings, the roof being of Welsh slate. The signal box is brick with a slate roof.

LAYOUT: the station buildings are on the eastern side of the railway with just a shelter on the western platform (replaced late C20 and not of special interest*). The signal box is at the northern end of the platform, and is next to the booking office building which is immediately to the south. North of the signal box is the former Station Master's house (which is not included in the Listing*). Also excluded from the Listing* is the access between the two platforms which is via the level crossing immediately to the north of the signal box.

STATION BUILDING: this is set on a low platform at the northern end of the standard level platform now used for alighting. It is a single storey building with coped gables and mullioned windows, with straight chamfered surrounds to openings. The gutters are supported by pairs of simple, block corbels. The building is divided into three: a large central room formerly the public booking hall (now the behind-the-counter booking office), with the former ticket office to the north (now front-of-counter), and the ladies waiting room to the south (now stores). The doorway to the central hall is now blocked. The hall is lit by a three-light window facing the tracks and two single windows to the rear. The internal partition with the ticket office to the north is modern and not of special interest*. The walls retain some timber planked panelling. This room also retains the station clock which is a wall-mounted, long case, weight-driven pendulum clock with a second face on the outside of the wall facing the tracks. The ticket office to the north just has a doorway with a large overlight facing the platform. It was heated by a corner set fireplace to the rear (now blocked with the chimney truncated). The former ladies waiting room to the south has a separate entrance from the platform with a single window to the front and a two light window to the rear. This was also provided with a fireplace served by a ridge stack that also served a fireplace in the central hall. Attached to the south is the modern waiting room which has a doorway and a two-light window matching that of the rest of the building. This however was converted from the original roof-less gentleman's toilet.

SIGNAL BOX: this is built to the Yardley Smith Type 1 design, being of two storeys with a low-pitched hipped roof and a projecting, centrally-placed rear chimney stack which survives to full height. The door, windows and timberwork to the upper, operating floor, have been replaced with PVC and, along with the modern external steps, are not of special interest*. Inside the signal box survives part of a 1902 L&YR lever frame, originally of 28 levers with framing for 12 levers surviving, with 9 levers remaining.

PLATFORM: the short section of low level platform, upon which the booking office and signal box are built, is included in the Listing. The standard height platforms to the south and opposite are not of special interest* and not included.

* Pursuant to section 1(5A) of the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 (‘the Act’) it is declared that these aforementioned features are not of special architectural or historic interest.

History

The wayside station at Bromley Cross was established with the opening of the Blackburn, Darwen and Bolton Railway in June 1848, and was originally provided with a temporary, timber station building. Following an incident in 1854, (when snow drifts trapped a train, marooning passengers at Bromley Cross's unheated timber hut for 24 hours), permanent station buildings were provided along the line in 1859 following merger with the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway (L&YR) in 1858. These were constructed by Joseph Greenup and Co of Manchester with buildings at The Oaks, Bromley Cross, Chapeltown (called Turton after 1877), Entwistle and Chatburn costing a total of £1,675. It is uncertain if this construction work just extended to the booking office and waiting room, or also included the Station Master's house (which is not included in the Listing) which lies just to the north of the station.

In 1875, the signal box was added to the station, built by E.S.Yardley and Co., a Manchester based railway signalling contractor run by Emily Yardley and her step brother William Smith. This company supplied equipment across the L&YR from the late 1860s until 1879. The lever frame in the signal box was renewed in 1902 with a new frame produced at the L&YR's works in Horwich. The station clock was probably installed at around this time, but may date to around 1886 when the station platform height was raised. Although carrying a London Midland Scottish Railway (LMS) identity number, this number indicates that the clock was installed by the L&YR before the creation of the LMS in 1923.

In the early 1970s, the associated goods yard with its shed, about 120m to the north of the station, was redeveloped as a housing estate. The waiting shelter on the western platform was replaced and the gentleman's toilets on the eastern platform were converted into a waiting room (this latter perhaps in the 1980s. Sometime previously (possibly as early as the 1920s), the door to the public booking hall in the main building was blocked, probably with its conversion into an enlarged booking office. In 1996 the station clock was restored to working order by the Railway Heritage Trust. In circa 2004 the signal box was modernised with timber work replaced in PVC (the windows being replaced in a different pattern), and new steel steps being installed along with an external toilet.

Reasons for Listing

Bromley Cross railway station, including its low level platform and signal box, are listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

* Rarity: as a rare survival of a once common form of rural station: a small station building set on a low level platform without integrated domestic accommodation for a Station Master. The survival of such a building in the North West (an area which saw particularly extensive demolition of Victorian stations in the late C20) is especially notable;
* Intactness: in addition to the form of the building, the station also retains a working Victorian station clock and its original signal box.

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