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Report - Ballingham Tunnnel, Hereford - Apr 2015

Discussion in 'Underground Sites' started by Oort, Apr 7, 2015.

  1. Oort

    Oort The spice expands consciousness.
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    Ballingham Tunnel - Hereford

    History

    The railway between Hereford and Gloucester was incorporated in 1851. This line crossed the Wye four times between Hereford and Ross and so four bridges had to be built. Four tunnels also needed to be driven - Dinedor, Ballingham, Fawley and Lea, the first three between Hereford and Ross. The line proved difficult to construct and in January 1853 work was delayed because of extremely wet weather which flooded the tunnel at Lea. On 16th April the Hereford Times reported that a workman had received fatal injuries at the Strangford cutting and on the 30th July that a collapse of earth at Dinedor had killed sub-contractor John Baker.

    Ballingham Tunnel was opened on the 1st of June 1855 and was part of Brunel's broad gauge Hereford Ross and Gloucester Railway. In 1862 the HR&G Railway was merged with the GWR and in 1869 the line was converted to standard gauge which only took a very short five days to complete.

    The tunnel is situated between Ballingham bridge, now long gone but the supports are still visible above the water, and the old station which has now been converted into a private house although the platform has been retained.

    The tunnel at 1208 yards is the longest in the region (32nd longest disused tunnel in the UK) and is nearly completely straight other than a slight turn to the east near the southern portal. The line reaches its summit somewhere in the middle of the tunnel. The north end has been patch repaired with brick and strengthening rings inserted into the original lining. The tunnel walls have also been strengthened with bricks at various spots through the length.

    The line and the station were finally closed in 1964 as they were never well used and only ran a limited service.

    Today the tunnel is still in pretty good nick but the calcite deposits are beginning to build up inside due to water seeping into the tunnels and it is only a matter of time before it becomes unsafe.

    The Visit

    Nice easy one to finish off the glorious Easter weekend, What a beautiful day it was which begs the question what the hell were we doing in a tunnel? After parking up; the entrance was found in about five minutes and with no climbing, crawling, sliding or any of the usual crap to get somewhere we just walked straight on up the cutting and in. We were intending to go and have a look at the bridge as well but the southern cutting was so overgrown and wet that we decided not to bother. it would be possible to do this from from the south portal but I really wouldn't recommend it without wellies and a stout stick.

    Light painting was a real bitch as this tunnel just eats light for breakfast!

    Visited with @TallRich, FIX1T and Carole.

    The Pics

    Northern Portal

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    Just inside looking in

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    ^ (C) Tallrich ^

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    Looking out of the Southern Portal

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    Looking into the Southern cutting, Bollocks to walking through that.

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    Thanks for looking!
     
    #1 Oort, Apr 7, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2015

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  2. TallRich

    TallRich 28DL Regular User
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    Nice one mate, good way to spend a sunny bank holiday afternoon!
    I still haven't had a chance to look at my pics and you've got a report up! :thumb
     
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  3. pigdog

    pigdog 28DL Regular User
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    looks good
     
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  4. wellingtonian

    wellingtonian Subterráneo
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    Good stuff man. Thought you lit it up rather well :thumb
     
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  5. Oort

    Oort The spice expands consciousness.
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    Thanks guys, any chance to practice light painting is always good!
     
  6. ACID- REFLUX

    ACID- REFLUX 28DL Regular User
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    Nice :thumblike this, pity it"s not near me i like Railway tunnels.

    All depends what you"re using for lighting ;)

    I wish the Yorkshire Tunnels were this well preserved and shiny inside, was it never used by Steam Engines lol

    I did one this morning it was like trying to light a Black Hole & a wet one at that ;)
     
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  7. Oort

    Oort The spice expands consciousness.
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    Still, sounds like a a fun place to be lol. My only complaint with this tunnel is that it's all a bit samey but yes very well preserved at the mo.
     
  8. ACID- REFLUX

    ACID- REFLUX 28DL Regular User
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    Nature of the beast i"m afraid with railway Tunnels.
    It"s only what nature and poor workmanship throw at them that adds to them Photogenically ......unless it"s got a nice curve lol
     
  9. Miss Mayhem

    Miss Mayhem 28DL Regular User
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    Good job :thumb
     
  10. Lenston

    Lenston Bajo Tierra
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    Great tunnel this mate :thumb
     
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  11. Seffy

    Seffy Bally up lads!
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    Nice, captured it well pal :thumb
     
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  12. loopylou

    loopylou 28DL Full Member
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    nice pics! a local visit for me too :-) thanks.
     
  13. KM_Punk

    KM_Punk Muppet
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    Love a good tunnel :thumb cheers for sharing
     
  14. WhoDaresWins

    WhoDaresWins Let's do this
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    Nicely lit, theres a tunnel like this on the Bristol to Bath cycle track and it's sketchy cycling through without lights on!
     
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