GWR Route: North Warwickshire Line
Spring Road Platform: gwrsr1112
View of Spring Road Halt shortly after opening on 1st July
1908 with an unidentified GWR 0-4-2T at the head of a local auto-train
passenger service at the down platform. Auto-trains had a remote vacuum brake
valve and a mechanical linkage between the locomotive and trailer to allow the
driver to control the locomotives regulator from a remote driving
position in the trailer. This enabled the auto-train to operate in either
direction, although the mechanical linkages did restrict the number of trailers
to a maximum of two.
In this picture the 0-4-2T locomotive appears to be one of
the Wolverhampton built 517 class, but the characteristic bunker
shape indicates Swindon modifications. The livery would be Brown or Lake. The
first auto trailer has the same livery as the locomotive, while the rear one
appears to be the chocolate and cream. In 1908 the Great Western Railway
replaced its chocolate and cream livery for passenger stock with an all Brown
livery and the distinctive colour scheme which is normally associated with the
company was only reintroduced in 1922.
The auto trailers both appear to be Diagram L, 70ft
trailers, with 9ft American bogies. The 30 trailers of this diagram were built
in four lots between August 1905 and February 1908, but only the last eighteen
were constructed with these bogies (nos. 53-70). Each trailer had a
drivers compartment at one end and a luggage compartment at the other
(note the barred window directly behind the locomotive). They were single class
coaches with 76 seats distributed in two open saloons separated by the entrance
vestibule area. The smaller saloon at the rear of the trailer (i.e. closest to
the locomotive) was the smoking saloon.
Notice the corrugated steel Pagoda style shelter
on the platform. This was removed soon after opening and the larger
prefabricated building from Wootten Wawen, which had toilet facilities and a
parcels room in addition to the waiting room was repositioned on the other
platform at a cost of £710. A smaller similar gable roofed building was
positioned on the down platform. Both platforms were light by oil lamps.