John Speller's Web Pages Barnsley Coal Railway

John Speller's Web Pages - Great Central Railway

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The rather utilitarian name of the Barnsley Coal Railway somewhat obfuscates the fact that it was an important link between Barnsley, Sheffield, Wakefield and Leeds. It was authorized by Act of Parliament XXIV & XXV Vict. cap. clxv, 1861, and was absorbed by the South Yorkshire Railway by an Act of 1863. The South Yorkshire Railway itself passed in 1864 to the Manchester, Sheffield & Lincolnshire Railway, later the Great Central. The Barnsley Coal Railway ran from Stairfoot Junction on the Mexborough to Barnsley line of the South Yorkshire Railway to Nostell on the West Riding and Grimsby Railway (Great Central and Great Northern Joint). The first section of the line, from Stairfoot to Royston opened on 28 January 1870, and the route was completed to Nostell on 1 August 1882. Passenger service was introduced on 1 September 1882 with stations at Staincross & Mapplewell, Notton & Royston and Ryhill. Passenger trains ran through from Barnsley Court House via Wakefield Westgate to Leeds Central. Passenger service was withdrawn 22 September 1930 and the end of goods service followed on 31 July 1961.
Railway Clearing House Junction Diagram showing of the Barnsley Coal Railway
Robinson's Class "8" 2-8-0's (LNER Class "O-4") were the war-horses of the Great Central coal traffic for many years. Many were built during World War I by the Railway Operating Department and later saw service on the GWR, LMS and LNER, as well as on numerous railways abroad. No. 63601 has happily been preserved and is shown here outside Doncaster Works in 2003. Image courtesy of Wikipedia Commons
Pride in a job well done. The station staff poses for the photographer at Ryhill in about 1910
Another view of Ryhill station on a postcard of around 1905. The station was later named "Wintersett & Ryhill" and finally "Wintersett"
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