Bridge 54

Before strengthening no brick piers

The photos in this post were sent to me by my Mum after she’d been to a local history meeting. The first shows “Dinting Arches” before the strengthening piers were added.

Up passenger from behind the school

The image above shows an up passenger train approaching Dinting station, before electrification but after the brick piers were added, as seen from behind Dinting C of E school. The arched stone support spans on the Mottram side of the bridge have been filled in by the embankment but those at the station end are still open.

I remember when I started work on the railway in the mid 1970s, one of the older members of staff told me how they needed an extremely good head for heights when attending to the paraffin lamps on the signal gantry at the station end of the bridge, seen clearly in this picture which shows an engineer’s train working on the overhead electrification. Also seen here, the masonry arches at the station end (shown in the second photo) have been bricked up by this time.

OHLE work showing the signals

The photo below shows the bridge from more or less the same angle as the first picture, but taken very shortly after electrification. Note how the down train has mixed steam and electric motive power but the up train is just steam hauled. This indicates that the image dates to the time when the new tunnel at Woodhead was just being brought into use, with trains in the Sheffield direction still using the old tunnel and westbound trains coming through the new one.

Up and down goods trains electric and steam

A more familiar view, to me at least, is this one of a double headed up goods train crossing the bridge with the corporate identity blue livery and the double arrow symbol on the locos.

Up goods with the church below

The final image is not of bridge 54 but of its close neighbour, now completely removed, bridge 55 at Dinting station. Again this one pre-dates the electrification and is of particular interest to me because I didn’t know the footbridge once had a roof. Note also how the station staff appear to be assembled for the photograph, there were somewhat better prospects for employment on the railway in those days.


The signalbox controlling the triangular junction is fairly new in this photo, as can be seen by the clean brickwork. One of the boxes it replaced can just be seen on the far side of the footbridge.


About Bob Hughes

Ex railwayman, life long railway modeller, lover of real ale and spicy food.
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