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Rowington Junction

GWR Route: Banbury to Wolverhampton

GWR Route: Lapworth to Henley in Arden Branch Line

Rowington Junction was opened by the Birmingham and Henley in Arden Railway Company when the single line branch line to Henley in Arden commence passenger services on 6th June 1894. Rowington Junction was one mile fifty chains south of Lapworth née Kingswood station. Despite the branch being made redundant in 1908 with the opening of the North Warwickshire Railway's station at Henley in Arden and with most passenger traffic being re-routed over this new line, the branch line to Henley in Arden remained open for a number of years. The branch obviously had some operational benefit to the GWR because some passenger and goods services continued to use the branch until it was closed to passenger traffic on 1st January 1915 and to goods during the following year on 1st January 1916 although the formal closure date was 1st January 1917 with the track being lifted in May and June 1917. A Trailing Crossover on the Main line was added north of double junction in December 1913.

The double Junction was retained and forty chains of the double track section of the branch was kept as sidings (one siding from each main line), but these did not appear in the STT as refuge sidings (see image 'gwrha2798'). The double junction was altered to a trailing junction to two sidings from the down main only in 1925. The truncated branch was used to store surplus or crippled wagons or carriages. A crippled wagon describes the name given to wagons that are deemed not in a good enough condition to complete their journey. They may have a 'hot box' where the oil or grease in the axle box has run dry causing it to over heat. They would be stopped and pulled out of their train after cooling down until it could be moved to Rowington Junction. Here it would remain until it had been given sufficient attention to make a once only journey to the wagon works. The trailing crossover on the Main Line was removed on 30th December 1956. Rowington Junction Signal Box was closed on 13th October 1957 being replaced with a Ground Frame. The Ground Frame, Junction and Sidings were eventually taken out of use on 9th June 1968. It is believe that the track bed of the Branch was retained initially, in case it was needed to be reinstated and was only sold in 1930s.

View of Rowington Junction looking towards Leamington Spa with the signal box controlling the branch to Henley on the right
Ref: gwrrj264
P Hopkins
Looking towards Leamington Spa with the signal box controlling the branch to Henley on the right
Close up showing the junction in greater detail including PW huts and the signalbox which controlled the Henley-in-Arden branch
Ref: gwrrj264a
P Hopkins
Close up showing the junction in greater detail including Permanent Way huts and the branch signal box
Close up showing the long line of crippled wagons which were stored on the branch after the cessation of services on 1st January 1915
Ref: gwrrj264b
P Hopkins
Close up showing the long line of crippled wagons which were stored on the branch after 1st January 1915
Looking along the branch towards Henley in Arden and Rowington Junction Signal Box with a PW hut on the left
Ref: gwrrj2774
Rowington Records
Looking along the branch towards Henley in Arden and Rowington Junction Signal Box with a PW hut on the left
Close up showing the brick built PW hut and the lean-to store and Rowington Junction Signal Box
Ref: gwrrj2774a
Rowington Records
Close up showing the brick built PW hut and the lean-to store and Rowington Junction Signal Box

An unidentified King Class locomotive passes Rowington Junction with a down express on 3rd March 1961
Ref: gwrrj2772
R King
An unidentified King Class locomotive passes Rowington Junction with a down express on 3rd March 1961
An unidentified ex-GWR 4-6-0 locomotive passes Rowington Junction with a southbound freight service on 3rd March 1961
Ref: gwrrj2773
R King
An unidentified ex-GWR 4-6-0 locomotive passes Rowington Junction on a southbound freight on 3rd March 1961
Ex-LMS 0-6-0 Class 4F No 44219 is seen departing the former branch line at Rowington Junction
Ref: gwrrj2771
Rowington Records
Ex-LMS 0-6-0 Class 4F No 44219 is seen departing the former branch line at Rowington Junction
A posed photograph of the workmen who worked maintaining the lines around Rowington Junction Signal Box
Ref: gwrrj1936
Rowington Parish Records
A posed photograph of the workmen who worked maintaining the lines around Rowington Junction Signal Box
A gang of platelayers are seen at work on the main line near to Rowington Junction Signal Box in 1950
Ref: gwrrj2780
Rowington Records
A gang of platelayers are seen at work on the main line near to Rowington Junction Signal Box in 1950

An unidentified King Class locomotive passes Rowington Junction with a down express on 3rd March 1961
Ref: gwrrj2772
R King
An unidentified King Class locomotive passes Rowington Junction with a down express on 3rd March 1961
GWR 2-8-0 28xx class No 2878 is seen working hard near Rowington Junction as it climbs towards Birmingham Snow Hill
Ref: gwrrj259
P Hopkins
GWR 2-8-0 No 2878 is seen working hard near Rowington Junction as it climbs towards Birmingham Snow Hill
GWR Banana Van converted from a 10 ton covered Wagon telegraph code 'Mink' stored at Rowington Junction
Ref: gwrrj2765
P Garland
GWR Banana Van converted from a 10 ton covered Wagon telegraph code 'Mink' stored at Rowington Junction
A low resolution version ofthe Signalling Diagram for Rowington Junction Signal Box in 1912
Ref: gwrrj2248
SRS
A low resolution version ofthe Signalling Diagram for Rowington Junction Signal Box in 1912