Lamp Huts & Lock-Ups

A post about unsung heroes.

The small sheds featured below bring back vivid memories, from 35 years ago, of cross-country running along the Cromford Canal and up the steep Sheep Pasture incline of the Cromford & High Peak Railway.

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Along the Fairford Branch

The Fairford Branch was built in two stages by two separate private companies. The Witney Railway Co. was formed locally after the residents of the prosperous blanket making town were repeatedly thwarted in their attempts to get connected to the booming railway network during the early Victorian era by the locally dominant Great Western Railway Co. On 23 December 1858 a meeting led to the formation of the independent Witney Railway Co. and royal assent was granted to a bill to build a line on from the Oxford, Worcester & Wolverhampton Railway at Yarnton to Witney on 1 August 1859.

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Middleton Top Engine Shed

Middleton Top Site from the slag heap. April 1967. Note the then ‘roofless’ engine shed adjacent to the engineers house. (Photo: John Evens)

This is the second in a series of posts about wrinkled tin or corrugated iron structures found on Britain’s railways.

For this post I’m returning home to Derbyshire and a fascinating location – Middleton Top – on the uplands above Middleton-by-Wirksworth.

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Pig Arks!

It was Graham Findlay on nb. Armadillo who prompted this post by kindly sending me copies of these two photos he’d taken passing Bridge 104 on the Oxford Canal:

Photo by Graham Findlay
Photo by Graham Findlay

He’d thought initially that he’d spotted a re-used Anderson shelter; it turned out to be another example of utility corrugated sheeting – the humble Pig Ark.

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Shepherd’s Huts

I know, I know, this is a terribly romanticised 21st Century image of a Hut, but at least it shows the essential form of the structure

The basic function of these portable agricultural buildings were; in a nutshell:

  •  Provide portable shelter for the shepherd and a store for his tools
  • A bed for the night and a simple table
  • A safe place to store medicines required for the flock
  • An emergency shelter for orphaned or injured Lambs

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