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Rednal Station

Very early photo of Rednal Station. Date not known The station opened in 1846 as a minor station on the Great Western Railway (GWR) Paddington to Birkenhead main line. The distinctive red brick station building could be seen on the west side of the line. (The building reverted to a private dwelling in 1975).
On 7th June 1865, a Permanent Way gang (used to repair track and grounwork) was repairing the "up" line 600 yards north of Rednal station on a 1 in 132 gradient that falls from Whittington. A green flag had been set 1100 yards away at the top of the incline as a warning. At 12.29 that day, an excursion train from Birkenhead left Chester for Shrewsbury consisting of 28 coaches and 2 brake vans, being hauled by 2 locomotives. An additional 4 coaches were added at Gobowen. When the train reached Whittington it begain to gain speed on the gradient but the driver of the front locomotive failed to see the warning flag. The brakes were applied when the workmen were sighted but it was too late to stop such a heavy train. The lead locomotive derailed on the unsupported track, but continued along the ballast until it reached a point outside Rednal Station where it ran off the track and turned over. The extreme weight of the following train meant that the first 4 carriages were completely destroyed , killing 11 passengers and the 2 train crew..
The following enquiry while criticizing the lack of braking power on such a massive train, blamed mainly the inadequate protection of the Permanent Way gang which should have supplimented the flag warning with detonators on the track.

1875 map showing Rednal station.

Photo of Rednal Station looking from the other direction. Date not known.
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