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Report - Healey Mills Train Yard August 2014

Discussion in 'Other Sites' started by Hunter991999, Aug 31, 2014.

  1. Hunter991999

    Hunter991999 28DL Full Member
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    A bit disappointed with this one its a massive site but there's a lack of trains (probably cos its abounded duh :banghead) and all the buildings are boarded up still well worth a visit tho

    A bit of history Taken from - http://www.rail.co.uk/rail-news/2012/end-of-the-line-for-healey-mills-depot/
    One of the UK’s most well-known freight railway locations has finally closed after a protracted run-down, as DB Schenker closed its staff depot at Healey Mills, West Yorkshire. The 140-acre site was once one of Europe’s largest marshalling yards, but over the past two decades the yards have become obsolete, the depot closed and now freight trains no longer call there to change crews.

    Healey Mills opened in 1963 in attempt to modernise wagon-load traffic. It replaced a dozen smaller yards in the area and its purpose was to improve the efficiency of sorting and marshalling wagons into trains before sending them off to their destination. The yards featured hump-shunting, in which wagons were pushed over a ‘hump’, freewheeled into the required siding, and braked using special retarders next to the rails - all controlled from a centralised operations tower.

    A purpose-built diesel depot opened alongside the yards at the end of 1966 and the two facilities saw round the clock activity with a claimed capacity of 4,000 wagons per day. Situated to the west of Wakefield, Healey Mills was ideally located for sending and receiving trains to all parts of the country, as well as handling the large number of local coal trains at the time.

    But wagon-load railfreight came under increasing threat in the 1970s and 1980s due to competition from road transport. Then a double blow came with the decline of the Yorkshire coal industry and resultant reduction in coal trains, which had once formed up to 50 percent of traffic at Healey Mills.

    As a result, the depot lost its own allocation of locomotives in 1984 and the marshalling yards closed in 1987 - although both were still used for stabling locomotives and trains until the early 2000s.

    The redundant sidings were then used to store long lines of withdrawn Class 37, 47, 56 and 58 locomotives until 2010, after which the only operations at Healey Mills were for crew changes of passing freight trains.

    From February 4, these crew changes now take place a few miles away at Wakefield Kirkgate station, where portable cabins have been installed as temporary offices. All that remains at Healey Mills are the overgrown sidings, a few redundant wagons, and the buildings awaiting demolition.

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  2. slayaaaa

    slayaaaa 28DL Regular User
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    Nice report and pics of the trains! If I were you, I'd go back later on, sites tend to have a way of 'loosening up a bit' shall we say. Enjoyed the report!
     
  3. Session9

    Session9 A life backwards
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    Very nice. Was the control tower open?
     
  4. dave

    dave 28DL Regular User
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    thats a question ive asked a few times now. Ive been a couple of times but never ventured that far down it looks like its well closed not sure if its still used for some other purpose now.
     
  5. Session9

    Session9 A life backwards
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    Could be a relay room etc in the basement I guess... Still looking more tidy than Tinsley's tower :laugh
     
  6. dave

    dave 28DL Regular User
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    Quite possible yes. Cheers for that. Deffo right about Tinsley mind.
     
  7. Hunter991999

    Hunter991999 28DL Full Member
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    no the control control tower was open and had a guard sitting in it
     
  8. Network Rail Rover

    Network Rail Rover 28DL Member
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    Please note that there are staff on site 24/7 and anyone found within the yard will be escorted from site and details passed on to the British Transport Police.

    Healey Mills Yard is private property so if you are found there, you are trespassing and will have passed over a live railway line to access.
     
  9. Ojay

    Ojay Admin
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    Yes folks, be careful of rail related trespass, consequences often follow and they could easily go down the criminal route if they had enough to warrant it at any given location

    Stray safe ;)
     
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