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LMS Route: Rugby to Wolverhampton

LMS Route: Birmingham New Street to Lichfield

LMS Route: Birmingham New Street to Soho and Perry Barr

Curzon Street Shed: lnwrcs2136

A contemporary drawing of Curzon Street station's 16 road 'roundhouse' as viewed from the passenger train shed

A contemporary drawing of Curzon Street station's 16 road 'roundhouse' as viewed from the passenger train shed. The shed was unusual in that the LNWR did not normally adopt the roundhouse design for their sheds. Instead of a turntable with roads radiating from the centre the LNWR adopted the policy of building straight sheds with tracks laid in parallel to each other. One of the two chimneys would be used by a boiler which would supply the power two pumps extracting water. The view above appears to suggest that above the single road entrance to the shed was a water tank.

The following description of the roundhouse is an extract on Curzon Street station in 1842 by Francis Wishaw


The building erected for the Locomotive engines at the Birmingham Station is of multilateral form, the diameter being 124 feet and its centre being 418 feet from the last tier of turntables without the passenger shed and 88 feet from the Canal. Towards the passenger station is a building projecting from the engine shed 60 feet in depth and 63 feet in front: in the middle of this front is an entrance for locomotives in communication with the up line; and on either side are the offices for this department, including a waiting room for the enginemen, store room, office, turnery, wood-room, and a coke heating oven. In the centre of the engine shed is a turntable 15 feet in diameter, from which 16 lines radiate to as many sides; two of them being continued without the building to join the main lines; the one for the outgoing, the other for the incoming engines: each radial line of way will hold two engines. The centre portion of this building is without a roof - a plan which appears to us as presenting many inconveniences. A sky light, with proper means of ventilation, would, we think, answer the purpose much better. The side circular portion is covered with a light iron roof. On each side of the outgoing line is a circular shaft into an arched passage below, for the purpose of raising the coke therefrom. This passage communicates with the coke vault, which being nearby on a level with the canal, the coke is readily transferred to it from the barges. Along the middle of the arched passage a single line of way is laid down with a gauge of 18 inches: on this the coke is moved from the cellar, by means of small trucks, to underneath the eyes or shafts above mentioned. The vault being at right angles to the passage, a small turntable is placed at the meeting of the two lines in the middle of the vault; the second line runs down to the canal. The coke vault is arched, is about 300 feet long, 30 feet wide, and 20 feet high, and is calculated to hold about 1,400 tons of coke. The communication between the locomotives shed and the vault beneath is by means of a flight of 27 steps, each rising 8¼ inches.