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Report - Waterloo/Victoria Tunnels, Liverpool, October 2011

Discussion in 'Underground Sites' started by Bovine, Oct 9, 2011.

  1. Bovine

    Bovine 28DL Regular User
    Regular User

    Oct 18, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Railway companies were all striving to capture a share of the rapidly growing Liverpool Docks freight traffic, despite there being a sandstone ridge between the flat hinterland and the river Mersey. Tunnelling was the only option and this tunnel was bored under Liverpool from Edge Hill to Waterloo Dock, opening in 1848. Actually two tunnels, with a short cutting between, Waterloo Tunnel is 862 metres long, whilst Victoria Tunnel is 2475 metres and surfaces at Edge Hill. Until 1895, locomotives were used for haulage through the Waterloo Tunnel, then wagons were attached to a cable, to be pulled up the incline to Edge Hill. The cutting between the tunnels, known as Byrom Street, was gas lit for 24 hour operations and had two sidings as well as locomotive watering facilities.
    After 1895, the entire line was locomotive worked and passenger trains began to be worked to the Mersey Docks and Harbour Boards new Riverside Station, for the liners. Waterloo Dock Goods Depot was established, with extensive facilities and connections to the Dock Railway 'main line' in both directions.
    The goods yard closed in 1963, whilst the passenger trains had finished by the end of the 1960's. With the closure of the Dock Railway in the Princes Dock area, there was no more freight traffic and the line was officially closed on 19 November 1972. Following tracklifting, the goods yard was filled in, right up to the tunnel mouth, but the tunnels themselves have been safeguarded for possible re-use.
    Visited with WIMR.

    The Waterloo Tunnel Entrance in 1971. The metal bridge carried the lines into Exchange Station and has now gone, along with the lower bridge. The whole area has been filled in to ground level.

    Filled in right up to the Tunnel

    Waterloo Tunnel, very wet and misty

    Byrom Street Cutting and rubbish!

    Lonely chair shot

    From Victoria Tunnel

    Workmans hut, carved out of the living rock, the pipe would have held a table top.

    One of the side air shafts

    Victoria Tunnel. It has been recently surveyed, with reflectors fitted to part of the roof. the position of the long filled in construction shafts are also marked. Is something in the offing?

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