The Maidstone East line (sometimes called the Barley Mow) is a two track main line that runs between Otford Junction (where it diverges toward Bat and Ball) to the South Eastern Main Line. The first port of call in the down direction after Otford Junction, is Kemsing a small unmanned station. After there, we pass Borough Green Down Loop, this is located London side of Borough Green station on the down side and was built to allow freight traffic to the Channel Tunnel to be recessed allowing Eurostars to pass. Following the Down Loop is Borough Green station, again a small station, but with the capability to reverse trains over the crossover at the London end of the station.
After Borough Green come West and East Malling stations, the latter a small halt, followed by Barming, before a drop into Maidstone East itself. On the approach to Maidstone East on the down side is the former carriage siding, and then to a bridge over the Paddock Wood - Strood line and followed by the River Medway.
Maidstone East itself is on a bend with Week Street Tunnel at the country end, and the signal box at the London end. It boasts 2 through platforms (1 fully reversible) along with a bay platform, through road, and tamper siding.
After leaving Maidstone East and passing through Week Street & Wheeler Street tunnels we pass over the country end crossover allowing up trains to access the down platform, and we carry on past Mote Park to Bearstead.
Bearstead is the first of three small two track stations, the others being Hollingbourne and Harrietsham.
Next comes Lenham, where we find two loop lines, one in each direction, along with a crossover from down to up.
The next point of interest on our journey is Charing, again a small basic station, followed by Hothfield Stone Terminal, located on the down side with crossovers to access both lines. This is closely followed by Beechbrook Loop, the location of the former connection to the HS1 construction sidings at Beechbrook Farm. To this day the actual railhead connections are still in place, but signed out of use. After passing Beechbrook we move onto Ashford IECC's area and Ashford International station itself.
Last edited by GeoffM on 15/09/2016 at 03:00