Monday, February 15, 2016

Unlikely Places - Preston & Wyre Railway - Residency Wyre BC

Pass a building site at the bottom of the aptly named Station Road in Poulton and the sharp eyed may notice amongst the piles of earth and concrete a patch of ancient cobbles, some railway sleepers and a couple of lengths rusty railway track.

These remnants of the Industrial Revolution are a clue to the existence of one of Wyre’s most “Unlikely Places” the remains of one of the first railways to be built in Britain, the railway that connected the new town of Fleetwood to Preston and the rapidly expanding railway network that was linking the factories and ports of Lancashire with London. It is also the site of Poulton’s first railway Station.

Preston & Wyre Railway was conceived in 1835 by local landowner and politician Peter Hesketh Fleetwood, and opened in 1840. It carried passengers and freight until 1970 when the passenger service ended, freight services continuing until 1999.

The railway was once part of the West Coast mainline linking Scotland to London. On one occasion paying host to Queen Victoria on a return trip from Scotland. The railway was a great success, in its first month the service carried over 20,000 passengers.

Peer over the bridge at Poulton Station and a section of rusting rail track mysteriously vanishes into a thicket of bushes and brambles, this is another part of the railway to Fleetwood, a part that is still almost intact all the way to Fleetwood.

The railway is currently being refurbished by Poulton & Wyre Railway Society with the long term objective of re-establishing a working railway.

Related to Residency with Wyre BC - People, Place & Conversation

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