Earliest flyover

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 12:36 #127663
clive
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Does anyone have any idea when the earliest flyover on the UK railway system was?

[There was one on the London to Croydon atmospheric railway, but apart from that.]

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 13:08 #127664
jc92
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I can't comprehensively answer your question, however I've had a look at all the flyovers I can think of and Battledown is currently the oldest, built 1897, although it'd be in competition with there's bound to be an older one I imagine. There was also a flyover junction on the GCML around Bulwell/arkwrigh, the name of which is escaping me, which was built around the same time.

I couldn't find a definitive date for Silkstream Junction/Flyover being commissioned, although Keith may be able to comment on that. The line itself opened 1868, but may not have had the flyover until later when coal traffic picked up enough to warrant it.

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 13:19 #127665
03piggs
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The one I've seen mentioned a couple of times is the flyover at the north end of Wood Green (now Alexandra Palace) station at the bottom end of the Hertford loop. Can't remember off hand any dates of when the line opened, but the section as far as Enfield chase was 1800 something.
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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 13:42 #127666
bill_gensheet
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Are we talking 'grade separated junction' such as that installed at Hitchin ?
By implication does it have to have replaced or duplicated a route at a flat junction ?

Trawled some mapping and here's some relatively early ones:

Edgware Branch (Finsbury Park north) before 1869

Canonbury Branch (Finsbury Park south) maybe 1875 on opening ?

Battledown (Worting Jn) May 1897

Aynho & Ashendon 1910

Several of the SW main ones appeared between 1897 and 1912 (Byfleet, Hampton Court Jn for Chessington)
Hampton Court was later - by 1935
Several of the London suburbans (Colchester, Shenfield) also seem to be around 1930 - so probably sponsored works.


Bill

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 14:20 #127670
58050
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Don't forget the flyovers at Bletchley(which is currently being re-built for the Oxford - Cambridge route) & the other one I can think of is the one at Nuneaton old layout which was used by freight trains between Leicester & the West Midlands to avoiding crossing the WCML.
Last edited: 18/06/2020 at 15:39 by 58050
Reason: corrected typo

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 15:31 #127671
bill_gensheet
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Bletchley is very recent, 1961 so maybe even the last of the 'BR' era.

Nuneaton is where you get into the 'what is a flyover / what is just a bridge'. Up to 1923 at least it was a separate route (MR) to the LNWR below.

The route would seem to have been there since construction, with the links to LNWR initially as sidings.

Bill

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 15:41 #127673
58050
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What about Horns Bridge at Chesterfield where 3 railway routes ran above each other. The top oe being the L&Y route. When I lived in Chesterfield I magined to get some old B&W photos of the 3 railway lines criss crossing each other there.
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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 17:16 #127676
Stephen Fulcher
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Northolt Jn where the Branch from Neasden dives under the main line to Paddington?

Nowadays the main is single and most trains take the branch to Marylebone of course.

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 17:42 #127677
clive
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bill_gensheet in post 127666 said:

Are we talking 'grade separated junction' such as that installed at Hitchin ?
Yes. It can be a simple double junction and I don't care whether the flyover crosses both tracks or if one goes round the outside and it only crosses the other. Just that it replaces a diamond crossing.

Thinking about it, I'd be interested for diveunders as well.

bill_gensheet in post 127666 said:

By implication does it have to have replaced or duplicated a route at a flat junction ?
No, it can be a brand new junction. I'm just looking for the oldest instances of junctions that weren't flat.

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 19:49 #127679
Soton_Speed
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bill_gensheet in post 127666 said:
Several of the SW main ones appeared between 1897 and 1912 (Byfleet, Hampton Court Jn for Chessington)
Hampton Court was later - by 1935
As a point of order, I wish to correct the honourable member's statement in that the Hampton Court Flyover was for the Hampton Court branch (originally built to link up with the Shepperton branch) and was constructed around the time of the First World War (see National Archive).

Most of the other junctions are dive-unders such as Raynes Park (for Epsom - Chessington is a flat junction off this line), New Malden (for Kingston Loop) and Byfleet (for Addlestone, Chertsey and Virginia Water) since the LSWR main line is quite often on a raised embankment.

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Last edited: 19/06/2020 at 00:49 by Soton_Speed
Reason: Schpelling......

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 22:38 #127681
clive
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bill_gensheet in post 127671 said:

Nuneaton is where you get into the 'what is a flyover / what is just a bridge'. Up to 1923 at least it was a separate route (MR) to the LNWR below.
Much later than that. Somewhere around 1980/1981 I deliberately caught a train back from Ely to Birmingham that didn't stop at Nuneaton, using the bypass line instead, so that I could tick it off. I have it noted as Midland Jn (0m58c from Nuneaton S Jn, 0m74c from Nuneaton, 11m30c from Whitacre Jn) to Abbey Jn (9m64c from Whitacre Jn, 0m60c from Nuneaton). Most trains called at the station then took the curve under the flyover to Abbey Jn.

It's on the 1891 OS map and also on the 1992 one.

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 22:39 #127682
bill_gensheet
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Soton_Speed in post 127679 said:
bill_gensheet in post 127666 said:
Several of the SW main ones appeared between 1897 and 1912 (Byfleet, Hampton Court Jn for Chessington)
Hampton Court was later - by 1935
As a point of order, I wish to correct the honourable member's statement in that the Hampton Court Flyover was for the Hampton Court branch (originally built to link up with the Shepperton branch) and was constructed around the time of the First World War (see National Archive).
Thanks for the info about the proposed Hampton Court - Shepperton link up.

The defence however begs to submit the following:
https://www.old-maps.co.uk/#/Map/516027/166126/10/101108
1920 - seemingly with no flyover. Now whether it would be resolved at that scale, and indeed how reliable surveys of railways were is another thing.

Hence my 'by 1935' comments which is the earliest map I have found where it is clearly shown.

Bill

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 22:47 #127683
clive
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jc92 in post 127664 said:

I couldn't find a definitive date for Silkstream Junction/Flyover being commissioned, although Keith may be able to comment on that. The line itself opened 1868, but may not have had the flyover until later when coal traffic picked up enough to warrant it.
It doesn't appear on an 1873 or 1894 OS map but does on an 1896.

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 22:54 #127684
clive
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03piggs in post 127665 said:
The one I've seen mentioned a couple of times is the flyover at the north end of Wood Green (now Alexandra Palace) station at the bottom end of the Hertford loop. Can't remember off hand any dates of when the line opened, but the section as far as Enfield chase was 1800 something.
1871.

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Earliest flyover 18/06/2020 at 23:06 #127685
Steamer
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I vaguely remember hearing something about a diveunder on the London Underground that was built very early in its history- does anyone know more?
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Last edited: 18/06/2020 at 23:06 by Steamer
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Earliest flyover 19/06/2020 at 00:08 #127690
bill_gensheet
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clive in post 127681 said:
bill_gensheet in post 127671 said:

Nuneaton is where you get into the 'what is a flyover / what is just a bridge'. Up to 1923 at least it was a separate route (MR) to the LNWR below.
Much later than that. Somewhere around 1980/1981.........
My meaning was that up to 1923 they were separate routes and so the 'flyover' by name was just a plain bridge in geographic terms. 1923 being relevant because, once merged under the LMS, the MR Nuneaton Abbey shut and Birmingham - Leicester trains mostly went via the Trent Valley Station.

Likewise, I got a diversion to do it not long before it shut, there were also a few summer Saturday trains likely to use it, but did not have to.

Bill

Last edited: 19/06/2020 at 00:17 by bill_gensheet
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Earliest flyover 19/06/2020 at 00:29 #127691
bill_gensheet
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Would Alyth Jn (from Newtyle) count ?
Added in 1868 but as much due to geography as avoiding a flat junction to the main line. Trains were through Dundee - Alyth

https://maps.nls.uk/view/82898556


Bill

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Earliest flyover 19/06/2020 at 00:44 #127692
Soton_Speed
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bill_gensheet in post 127682 said:

The defence however begs to submit the following:
https://www.old-maps.co.uk/#/Map/516027/166126/10/101108
1920 - seemingly with no flyover. Now whether it would be resolved at that scale, and indeed how reliable surveys of railways were is another thing.

Hence my 'by 1935' comments which is the earliest map I have found where it is clearly shown.

Bill
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Apologies, I am currently within earshot of the real thing...

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Earliest flyover 19/06/2020 at 10:20 #127696
trolleybus
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The 1873 map doesn't seem to have the Wood BGreen junction at all, but there is a flyover at Finsbury Park for the line towards Highgate.
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Earliest flyover 19/06/2020 at 13:46 #127698
John 23
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A quick reference to Charles Klapper's biography of Herbert Walker reveals that the electrification decision for, inter alia the Hampton Court electrification was in 1914, before August. He also cites the opening of electric services to Hampton Court as being June 18th 1916.
As the flyover would have been constructed as part of that scheme, it would clearly date from 1915, as suggested.

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Earliest flyover 19/06/2020 at 14:00 #127700
JamesN
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Hampton Court Jn also encompasses, as far as I’m aware, the junction with the “New” (Cobham) Line - when was that grade separated, could wires be being crossed here?
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Earliest flyover 19/06/2020 at 16:28 #127702
bill_gensheet
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JamesN in post 127700 said:
Hampton Court Jn also encompasses, as far as I’m aware, the junction with the “New” (Cobham) Line - when was that grade separated, could wires be being crossed here?
I don't think so, it is down to what appears on available survey maps.
The Cobham line diveunder is present on the 1912 mappings.
As it took a big sweep it is difficult to ignore as it affects legal property boundaries.

The Hampton Court line flyover is not represented on the 1920 map (1 inch scale), probably as it was within railway property and so easier to forget about despite it clearly being there. Later 1 inch maps do show it, but I suspect only due to prompting by the 1935 update at the higher scale.

The 1935 is 1:1250 scale so shows much more details, and has caught up with reality in having the flyover represented.

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Earliest flyover 20/06/2020 at 01:15 #127711
pbinnersley
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Hillmorton Junction (south of Rugby) opened 1881 with the Northampton line and, according to OS maps was a flying junction in 1884, so was probably a flying junction from the outset.
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Earliest flyover 20/06/2020 at 13:54 #127717
bill_gensheet
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So far the top 3 seem to be:

GN Highgate branch - 22 August 1867
Alyth Jn - Newtyle (if you count it) 3 August 1868
Wood Green (Hertford loop) 1871

Then, if discounting Alyth Jn - Newtyle
Rugby Hilmorton 1881

Bill

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Earliest flyover 20/06/2020 at 14:48 #127719
Albert
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Are any of those viaducts still in place? In the Netherlands I know that there is a river bridge from 1869 still in active use, with 8+ trains per hour in both directions. It has been rebuilt after WWII though.
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Last edited: 20/06/2020 at 14:49 by Albert
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