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PURBECK RAILWAY CIRCLE
Show No.6: “The Birth, Life and Death of “MOTALA” by Mike Walshaw Swanage Railway Signal & Telegraph Dept.
After the closure of the Swanage Branch in January 1972, the track was lifted from Swanage up the line towards the Goods Sidings at Furzebrook.
Money was raised to halt the work and leave the track in place down to a point 1 ½ miles north of Corfe Castle. This point was called ‘Motala’ after a kennels nearby.
British Rail installed these buffer stops at the end of the line. Photo Gerry Andrews, courtesy Andrew P.M. Wright
In January 2002 the Swanage Railway extended its track from Corfe Castle and Norden to meet British Rail’s track at Motala. Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
The buffer stops were removed and new track was installed to join The Big Railway. 3 rd January Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
A de-railer separating the two Railways was lifted away to let the Virgin Voyager reach Swanage. 6 th September Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
In November 2005, the buffer stop was removed and Gates and Trap Points were installed at Motala. Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
On 2 nd July 2006, the first steam loco to travel over the line from Worgret Junction passes Motala. Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
On 10th May 2007, a train of 4 Diesel Locos and a 4-VEP for the Diesel Gala pass Motala. Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
The “Royal Wessex” headed by at Motala on 2 nd May The first steam train to Swanage since Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
On Monday 8 th September 2014 the Line between Motala and a new Boundary near Worgret Junction was passed over by Network Rail to Dorset County Council and leased to the Swanage Railway.
This spelt the end of the interface between the two Railways at Motala.
Work started on Tuesday 9 th September 2014 with the removal of the STOP Boards by our ever-useful Road-Railer Machine. Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
The two ‘Trap Points’ were set for through running by Barry Light, P/Way Manager, and Tony North, S&T Manager. Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
Tony North displays the ‘Norden to Motala’ Train Staff that was used to unlock the Trap Points leading onto the Swanage Railway. Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
The next operation was to remove the Trap Points and replace them with a 60ft length of plain track. This operation is called “Plain-Lining”.
It took place on Wednesday 15 th October 2014 in front of an invited audience from the Press.
The redundant Cabin and the Lever Frame await their fate. The Swanage Railway’s Trap Point is in the foreground.
This is the Swanage Railway’s 15-ton Diesel-Electric Crane, a most useful piece of kit for heavy lifting operations.
The rodding that connected the levers to the Trap Points is disconnected and removed.
The Cabin is opened so that it can be un-bolted from its foundations, ready for craning off.
The Crane positions itself for hoisting out the Cabin.
The Cabin is hoisted high, to be placed on the flat wagon behind it. Helmets are essential ‘Personal Protective Equipment’.
Next, the Lever Frame is hoisted out, for use elsewhere on the Swanage Railway.
The Press, from the BBC, ITV and Kingfisher Publications, have been provided with a Viewing Area to film the proceedings.
At last, what we have been waiting for – the first Trap Point is lifted out.
The Trap Points are placed on the flat wagon, to join the Cabin and the Lever Frame.
Now the second Trap Points are craned out, while the Press confer.
The Road-Railer now shovels away the ballast to provide a flat road-bed for the new track.
The concrete sleepers are lifted one-by-one and placed on the road-bed.
The sleepers are carefully spaced out on the road-bed.
The two Road-Railers lift the first 60ft length of rail and place it in the chairs.
The rail is nudged into place so it will drop into the chairs. It is exactly the correct length.
The second rail is then lowered into position in its chairs.
This was Motala. Nothing but some fresh ballast marks the former Boundary with Network Rail as an Engineer’s Special passes on 30 th Oct Photo: Andrew P.M. Wright
Photo credits: Gerry Andrews and Andrew P.M. Wright as credited. Otherwise: Mike Walshaw
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