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Spring Road Platform

GWR Route: North Warwickshire Line

Whereas 'Stations' were staffed and equipped to handle most classes of traffic (both Goods and Passenger) and 'Halts' (or Haltes) were cheaply constructed unmanned stopping places, which were originally introduced to facilitate steam railcar services and therefore had no goods facilities, limited passenger facilities and usually had limited length platforms, a 'Platform' was the intermediate design. Platforms normally had passenger facilities such as a booking office and waiting room, platforms sufficient to accommodate longer suburban passenger trains and were normally manned with one or two staff. Platforms could normally handle parcels traffic, but had no goods traffic facilities.

Spring Road was opened as a Platform on 1st July 1908, when the North Warwickshire Line was opened to passenger traffic, although it appears to have been an after thought as it is not mentioned in Mr H Smith's description of the newly constructed line in January 1908. The 210 foot brick faced platforms were located in a sheltered shallow cutting three quarters of a mile from Tyseley junction. No footbridge was provided and access was from sloping ramps to the overbridge at the north end of the station, which carried Spring Road across the railway.

A prefabricated building made from corrugated sheet steel on a timber frame was erected adjacent to the up side ramp fronting on to Spring Road to provide the booking office facilities. It is thought that the original station arrangement had a simple pagoda style waiting room on each platform, but that these were quickly exchanged for more substantial prefabricated corrugated buildings from elsewhere along the line to improve the passenger facilities. Photographs exist showing the building on the down side was originally a pagoda style waiting room, but the later photographs indicate that the building on the up side was the one recorded as being relocated from further along the line at Wootten Wawen Halt. In addition to a waiting room this building also contained toilets and staff facilities. Neither building had a canopy. Oil lamps were provided to illuminate the platforms.

Although by 2nd February 1922 the station was referred to in public timetables as ‘Spring Road Halt’ and from 7th July 1924 as 'Spring Road', the name boards retained the suffix 'Platform' and no additional facilities appear to have been provided. A 100 foot extension to both platforms was authorised on 22nd March 1928 to cater for increased passenger traffic and at the same time additional lighting was provided. In 1929 the station was recorded as having facilities for both passenger and parcels traffic.

Today the original 1908 booking office still remains in-situ. Used only for storage, it retains most of the original internal wooden panelling and the booking counter division. This building would make an ideal restoration project for a GW preservation railway wanting to replicate a typical small standard station built in the Edwardian period.

Robert Ferris

View of Spring Road station looking in the direction of Tyseley as a railmotor arrives on a Moor Street to Stratford upon Avon service
Ref: gwrsr1266
Lens of Sutton
View of Spring Road station looking in the direction of Tyseley as a railmotor arrives on a Moor Street to Stratford upon Avon service
Looking towards Birmingham from the down station with the up platform on the right during the 1950-60s
Ref: gwrsr1368
C Gilbert
Looking towards Birmingham from the down station with the up platform on the right during the 1950-60s
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
Ref: gwrsr1112
RS Carpenter
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
View of AEC Diesel Railcar No 5, the first of a trio of local suburban railcars, standing at Spring Road's down platform
Ref: gwrsr1115
RS Carpenter
View of AEC Diesel Railcar No 5, the first of a trio of local suburban railcars, standing at Spring Road's down platform
Looking towards Birmingham with the short fixed Distance Signal probably deliberately constructed at this height for the signal arm to 'stand out' against the bridge abutment
Ref: gwrsr292
RS Carpenter
Looking towards Birmingham with the short fixed Distance Signal probably deliberately constructed at this height for the signal arm to 'stand out' against the bridge abutment

Close up of the replacement main prefabricated passenger facilities on the up platform of Spring Road Platform
Ref: gwrsr292a
RS Carpenter
Close up of the replacement main prefabricated passenger facilities on the up platform of Spring Road Platform
Close up of the basic waiting room found on the down platform constructed from the same corrugated cladding materials used on the up platform building
Ref: gwrsr292b
RS Carpenter
Close up of the basic waiting room found on the down platform constructed from the same corrugated cladding materials used on the up platform building
Looking towards Birmingham from the down station with the up platform on the right during the 1950-60s
Ref: gwrsr649
RS Carpenter
Looking towards Birmingham from the down station with the up platform on the right during the 1950-60s
Looking towards Birmingham from the Stratford upon Avon end of the up platform with the down platform on the left, where once the main passenger facilities stood
Ref: gwrsr291
RS Carpenter
Looking towards Birmingham from the Stratford upon Avon end of the up platform with the down platform on the left, where once the main passenger facilities stood
Close up of the main access to the station showing the sloping path from the up platform to Spring Road and at the top the booking office
Ref: gwrsr291a
RS Carpenter
Close up of the main access to the station showing the sloping path from the up platform to Spring Road and at the top the booking office