HAL­I­FAX

Model Rail (UK) - - Masterplan -

Hal­i­fax dates back to the 13th cen­tury. By the 19th cen­tury, it was pros­per­ing from the cot­ton, wool and car­pet in­dus­tries and woollen cloth pro­duc­tion, to­gether with the al­lied trades of dye­ing and spe­cialised en­gi­neer­ing. This pro­vided em­ploy­ment for most of the pop­u­la­tion in Lower Calderdale, ad­join­ing Spen and Colne val­leys. The growth and con­cen­tra­tion of the wool in­dus­try in this dis­trict was mainly due to two fac­tors; a coal­field, and moor­lands of al­most lime-free Mill­stone Grits, that pro­vided the soft, pure wa­ter es­sen­tial to var­i­ous pro­cesses in the tex­tile in­dus­try. The town’s sta­tion, built by both the Great North­ern and the Lan­cashire & York­shire rail­ways, opened on July 1 1844. From 1890, it was named ‘Hal­i­fax Old’, which changed to ‘Town’ in 1951 but, from 1961, it was sim­ply called ‘Hal­i­fax’. Lo­cated on a ledge at the foot of

the town, trains from Leeds would burst from Bea­con Hill Tun­nel, past the junc­tion and the 1884-built sig­nal box and into what was a large yet gloomy sta­tion. There were three is­land plat­forms and a bay plat­form. A sec­ond pas­sen­ger sta­tion opened in 1879, on the GNR line to Queens­bury. It served North Bridge, a com­mer­cial area noted for the Frank Matcham-de­signed Grand Theatre. The line be­yond to St Paul’s was closed in 1960, while the re­main­ing link from North Bridge to Hal­i­fax sta­tion was freight-only from 1960 to full clo­sure on April 1 1974. To­day, the sta­tion build­ing has been re­placed with a mainly glass struc­ture. The is­land plat­form build­ing still ex­ists for non-rail­way use while the only nearby chim­ney be­longs to the Nestlé UK (for­merly the Mack­in­tosh fac­tory).

Above: Hal­i­fax sta­tion on Au­gust 30 1912. A west­bound LYR lo­cal service stands on the right with an ex­press along­side, await­ing de­par­ture. A rake of LYR coaches is at the cen­tral plat­form, op­po­site a North Eastern Rail­way train, and in the fore­ground a...

In terms of non-rail­way struc­tures, there are sev­eral of con­sid­er­able ar­chi­tec­tural in­ter­est wor­thy of in­clu­sion in a fic­ti­tious com­pos­ite lay­out de­sign, ar­ranged for vis­ual ef­fect rather than pro­to­type fidelity. Vic­to­ria Hall, pic­tured on this...

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