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Report - DONCASTER NORTH CHORD



farmer.ned

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#1
another day and another job took me to joan croft lane and an ideal visit of 2 of my to do sites joan croft level crossing and doncaster north chord
both of which lie within a short distance of each other.
as this would be a very lengthy report with loads of photographs i have split the two sites into two seperate reports joans croft level crossing will be in the other section as it does not qualify for high stuff.

doncaster north chord lies some 8 miles north of doncaster between shaftholme junction and joan croft junction at thorpe in balne on the east coast main line.
opened in june 2014 and built by morgan sindall at a cost of £45million doncaster north chord elliminates the need for slow moving coal trains to drax
eggborough or ferrybridge from immingham deep water import terminal having to use the east coast main line as far as temple hurst junction freeing up space for high speed passenger trains and removing a bottle neck from joan croft junction as well as shaftholme junction and joining up both shaftholme and joan croft junctions where there was previously no connection.
the doncaster north chord connects the east coast main line with the former lancashire and yorkshire line westbound to knottinley via askern and wommersley where it joins the pontefract line and the former west riding and grimsby railway eastbound towards stainforth and hatfield and towards thorne junction where the lines split again for hull and scunthorpe the only trains using the chord though at present are freight services to and from the port of immingham which take the scunthorpe line at thorne junction some 2 miles beyond stainforth and hatfield station where the chord line ends.

before the flyover as stated joan croft and shaftholme junctions were a nightmare bottleneck with any trains waiting to head south to doncaster from shaftholme or north up the east coast mainline mean that trains from these two locations had to be pathed into existing ecml traffic as both had to cross the east coast line to gain their respective directions add in a manual hand gate worked level crossing at joan croft ( dealt with in another post ) and the bottle neck was complete
with the two junctions being worked from a signalbox at shaftholme junction with trains being passed to arksey in the south and moss in the north .

today shaftholme signal box has gone as has joan croft level crossing and the two junctions are worked from doncaster power box
the two junctions still exist and regular coal and biomass trains still cross the ecml to head for drax and eggborough power stations with some routed via the doncaster north chord and knottingley.

shaftholme junction was once used as a diversionary route for passenger trains and as a freight line to and from askern colliery and coalite plants
the shaftholme line still sees freight trains and joins the north chord further west up the line at a newly created junction it also saw the return of passenger trains
in more than 70 years as grand central was granted 3 trains daily from bradford interchange via pontefract & askern rejoining the ecml at shaftholme junction
intrestingly enough there was a former station at askern and the two platforms still remain and has been identified by DMBC as a potential station for re opening
the flyover does look a bit of an eyesore on the surrounding landscape but praticality wise it was urgently needed to solve the ecml,s pathing problems maybe in time when a few trees grow around it it wont look like the concrete monstrocity it does now meanwhile back at askern the grand cental voyagers roar by the empty platforms at askern and yet another biomass train rumbles slowly over the chord heading for drax.
aV2N9W.jpg
doncaster north chord viewed from the level crossing
Dy6Spz.jpg

and the other side from joan croft lane showing the full size of the structure
493UH4.jpg

as a virgin trains now LNER heads north under the flyover
zDOso7.jpg

had to be a bit quick up the steps to get trackside and get these as the track gang was lurking about ...... the access board
s9OykH.jpg

looking towards stainforth and the full length of this magnificent viaduct
4NLSfc.jpg

looking towards askern the shaftholme junction line is on the left diverging just beyond the signal
askern.jpg

up the line to askern clearly showing the disused platforms could trains one day potentially call here ?
 

farmer.ned

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#3
yes you are..... LOL ,,,,:coatits really no different to conisborough viaduct only this has tracks and the p.way gang were about
and.... NO ONE HAS EVER DONE AN URBEX REPORT ON THE NORTH CHORD BEFORE !!!!.........LOL:p:cool::thumb
my post is a first :Not Worthy:Not Worthy and it is really a magnificent thing
 

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