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Duddeston Mill Road Crossing & Junction

LMS Route: Nuneaton to Birmingham New Street
LMS Route: Birmingham New Street to Tamworth

Today the railway crosses Duddeston Mill Road by a bridge, causing no disruption, but this was not always so. Before the line was first constructed, the Ordnance Survey map revised circa 1831 shows Duddeston Mill Road going just to Duddeston Mill, and no further, ending by the millpond. There had been no right of way past the mill and it is likely that initially there was no crossing of the railway at that point. However the expansion in the Lower Saltley area that occurred, including the construction of the Saltley Theological Training College, Adderley Park and library and surrounding houses, meant that a crossing developed at that point, though there is no evidence that there was initially a vehicular crossing. In 1865 it was stated that at least 100 people a day used the crossing several times a day. and by then there was a vehicular crossing, though with no manned control.

In the 1860s the rail traffic had also increased considerably, and the Ordnance Survey map circa 1864 map shows that then two lines joined close to, or actually on, the crossing. Apparently shunting of wagons caused even more traffic over the crossing. A number of accidents in which at least three people were killed had occurred. Two of the fatalities were in 1865, the second on 28th August 1865 when a man walked from behind a slow train that had just passed into the path of the ;Derby Express', literally losing his head in the process. Pressure was brought on the company , who, in mid-1866, erected a footbridge. though by modern standards it would not appear to have been very safe to use, being unsuitable for the disabled, having no handrail, and being prone to become slippery with ice in the winter. It would appear that at about this time a manned crossing for vehicles was also constructed as apparently the crossing keeper allowed disabled to cross on the level via this, and it is recorded that even fully able adults did not often use the bridge. Further pressure finally forced the Midland Company and the Council to share the cost of the proper bridge which is there today. This was after much discussion and purchase of Duddeston Mill which was necessary for the work to take place. I suspect that the land purchased also included land to the north later used for sidings. The total cost was £20,000, of which the council contributed £8,500.

Mike Jee

A copy of a letter of complaint about the crossing in the Birmingham Post 21st November 1864
Ref: mrdr1495
Birmingham Post
A copy of a letter of complaint about the crossing in the Birmingham Post 21st November 1864
Report on fatal accident involving railway worker at Duddeston Mill Road Crossing on 11th April 1865
Ref: mrdr1479
Birmingham Post
Report on fatal accident involving railway worker at Duddeston Mill Road Crossing on 11th April 1865
Report on fatal accident involving a pedestrian at Duddeston Mill Road Crossing on 28th September 1865
Ref: mrdr1480
Birmingham Journal
Report on fatal accident involving a pedestrian at Duddeston Mill Road Crossing on 28th September 1865
Complaint about the Midland Railway erecting a hideous passenger footbridge described as a 'gallows'
Ref: mrdr1481
Birmingham Post
Complaint about the Midland Railway erecting a hideous passenger footbridge described as a 'gallows'
Ex-LMS 5MT 4-6-0 No 45059 passes Duddeston Road signal box on a down express train for New Street station
Ref: mrdr1482
Aris Birmingham Gazette
Report on the failure of the MR to provide handrails on footbridge so now the crossing is even more dangerous

Report on the deputation by the Public Works Committee of the Council to the President of the Board of Trade
Ref: mrdr1483
Aris Birmingham Gazette
Report on the deputation by the Public Works Committee of the Council to the President of the Board of Trade
Report of the Town Council approving a contribution of 8,500 to be made towards the cost of a new bridge
Ref: mrdr1484
Aris Birmingham Gazette
Report of the Town Council approving a contribution of £8,500 to be made towards the cost of a new bridge
Report on a deputation to the Town Council objecting to the use of an inclined plane replacing the bridge
Ref: mrdr1485
Birmingham Post
Report on a deputation to the Town Council objecting to the use of an inclined plane replacing the bridge
Report on a deputation to the Town Council objecting to the use of an inclined plane replacing the bridge
Ref: mrdr1498
Birmingham Post
Report detailing the structure used for the footbridge and the method of working the level crossing gates
A copy of the Ordnance Survey map circa 1814 revised 1841 showing the area prior to arrival of the railway
Ref: mrdr1496
Ordnance Survey
A copy of the Ordnance Survey map circa 1814 revised 1841 showing the area prior to arrival of the railway

A copy of the 1862 OS map showing Duddeston Mill Road Crossing after the arrival of the railway
Ref: mrdr1497
Ordnance Survey
A copy of the 1862 OS map showing Duddeston Mill Road Crossing after the arrival of the railway
An 1886 OS Map showing Duddeston Mill Road passing beneath the railway and the entrance to Saltley shed
Ref: mrdr1486
National Library of Scotland
An 1886 OS Map showing Duddeston Mill Road passing beneath the railway and the entrance to Saltley shed

Photographs of Duddeston Road Junction

Duddeston Road Junction signal box being dwarfed by Saltley Gas Works as seen on Sunday 25th April 1954
Ref: mrdr1005
DJ Norton
Duddeston Road Junction signal box being dwarfed by Saltley Gas Works as seen on Sunday 25th April 1954
An unidentified ex-LMS 3F 0-6-0 'Large Goods' locomotive passes the second Duddeston Road Junction signal box
Ref: mrdr1010
DJ Norton
An unknown ex-LMS 3F 0-6-0 'Large Goods' locomotive passes the second Duddeston Road Junction signal box
View of Duddeston Road Junction's third and last signal box being erected to open on 2nd October 1955
Ref: mrdr1003
DJ Norton
View of Duddeston Road's third and last signal box being erected to open on 2nd October 1955
Duddeston Road Signal Box on 3rd August 1969, three weeks prior to its closure on 24th of the same month
Ref: mrdr999
B Bill
Duddeston Road Signal Box on 3rd August 1969, three weeks prior to its closure on 24th of the same month
Looking north towards Saltley station with the old signal box on the right on Sunday 20th March 1955
Ref: mrdr1013
DJ Norton
Looking north towards Saltley station with the old signal box on the right on Sunday 20th March 1955

Interior view of Duddeston Road's 1955 signal box showing the box's basic frame prior to the levers being fitted
Ref: mrdr997
DJ Norton
Interior view of Duddeston Road's 1955 signal box showing the box's basic frame prior to the levers being fitted
Track replacement is being carried out on the junction adjacent to Duddeston Road signal box
Ref: mrdr1004
DJ Norton
Track replacement is being carried out on the junction adjacent to Duddeston Road Junction signal box
Close up showing the single entry and departure line to Saltley Shed which fanned out to provide reception roads
Ref: mrdr996a
DJ Norton
Close up showing the single entry and departure line to Saltley Shed which fanned out to provide reception roads
Close up showing some of the sidings at Lawley Street Goods Station to the right of the locomotive
Ref: mrdr996b
DJ Norton
Close up showing some of the sidings at Lawley Street Goods Station to the right of the locomotive
Close up showing on the right Saltley Gas Works' extensive sidings which lay alongside the former Midland Railway main line
Ref: mrdr1001a
DJ Norton
Close up showing on the right Saltley Gas Works' extensive sidings which lay alongside the former MR main line

An unidentified ex-LMS 4F 0-6-0 goods locomotive is seen approaching Duddeston Road Junction signal box
Ref: mrdr996
DJ Norton
An unidentified ex-LMS 4F 0-6-0 goods locomotive is seen approaching Duddeston Road Junction signal box
Ex-LMS 8F 2-8-0 No 48101 is working hard as it is banked up on a Class 5 fast freight on Saturday 28th July 1962
Ref: mrdr998
T Owen
Ex-LMS 8F 2-8-0 No 48101 is working hard as it is banked up on a Class 5 fast freight on Saturday 28th July 1962
Ex-LMS 5MT 4-6-0 No 44828 approaches Duddeston Road signal box with an Ordinary train for New Street station
Ref: mrdr1001
DJ Norton
Ex-LMS 5MT 4-6-0 No 44828 approaches Duddeston Road signal box with an Ordinary train for New Street station
Ex-LMS 5MT 4-6-0 No 45059 passes Duddeston Road signal box on a down express train for New Street station
Ref: mrdr1002
DJ Norton
Ex-LMS 5MT 4-6-0 No 45059 passes Duddeston Road signal box on a down express train for New Street station
Ex-LMS 4F 0-6-0 No 44434 heads a Class K stopping freight service on the down Camp Hill line on Sunday 30th November 1952
Ref: mrdr995
DJ Norton
Ex-LMS 4F 0-6-0 No 44434 heads a Class K stopping freight service on the down line on 30th November 1952

British Railways built Ivatt Class 2MT No 46443 heads a train into Lawley Street sidings opposite to Saltley Depot
Ref: mrdr1476
A Pratt
British Railways built Ivatt Class 2MT No 46443 heads a train into Lawley Street sidings opposite to Saltley Depot
British Railways built Ivatt 2MT 2-6-0 No 46448 is seen with brake van in tow as it passes Saltley shed
Ref: mrdr1478
A Pratt
British Railways built Ivatt 2MT 2-6-0 No 46448 is seen with brake van in tow as it passes Saltley shed
Another view of BR built 2MT 2-6-0 No 46448 with brake van in tow now passing Duddeston Signal Box
Ref: mrdr1477
A Pratt
Another view of BR built 2MT 2-6-0 No 46448 with brake van in tow now passing Duddeston Road Signal Box
Ex-LMS 5XP 4-6-0 No 45593 'Kolhapur' having reversed out from Saltley shed waits for right of way in early 1968
Ref: mrdr1492
A Pratt
Ex-LMS 5XP 4-6-0 No 45593 'Kolhapur' having reversed out from Saltley shed waits for right of way in early 1968
BR Standard 9F 2-10-0 No 92150 passes Saltley shed on an oil train from Bomford Bridge to Fawley in Hampshire
Ref: mrdr1493
A Pratt
BR Standard 9F 2-10-0 No 92150 passes Saltley shed on an oil train from Bomford Bridge to Fawley in Hampshire

An unidentified ex-LMS 8F 2-8-0 locomotive reverses out of Saltley shed and over Duddeston Road during the early 1960s
Ref: mrdr1494
A Pratt
An unidentified ex-LMS 8F 2-8-0 locomotive reverses out of Saltley shed and over Duddeston Road

An 1886 Ordnance Survey Map showing the entrance to Saltley shed on the left and Saltley station on the right
Ref: mrdr1487
National Library of Scotland
An 1886 Ordnance Survey Map showing the entrance to Saltley shed on the left and Saltley station on the right
A 1902 OS Map showing Duddeston Mill Road passing beneath the railway and the entrance to Saltley shed
Ref: mrdr1488
National Library of Scotland
A 1902 OS Map showing Duddeston Mill Road passing beneath the railway and the entrance to Saltley shed
A 1902 Ordnance Survey Map showing the entrance to Saltley shed on the left and Saltley station on the right
Ref: mrdr1489
National Library of Scotland
A 1902 Ordnance Survey Map showing the entrance to Saltley shed on the left and Saltley station on the right
A 1913 OS Map showing Duddeston Mill Road passing beneath the railway and the entrance to Saltley shed
Ref: mrdr1490
National Library of Scotland
A 1913 OS Map showing Duddeston Mill Road passing beneath the railway and the entrance to Saltley shed
A 1913 Ordnance Survey Map showing the entrance to Saltley shed on the left and Saltley station on the right
Ref: mrdr1491
National Library of Scotland
A 1913 Ordnance Survey Map showing the entrance to Saltley shed on the left and Saltley station on the right