Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Addington Workshops 20 years on [2]

When I started working in rail preservation in 1985 the Addington Shops were still open and a familiar feature of the rail landscape in Christchurch. The Ferrymead Railway used to hold monthly members in the Social Hall which was next to the Main North Line at the end of Lowe Street (as seen on the maps below).

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The left hand map shows the footprint of the social hall. The right hand map shows the surrounding area in more detail. Lowe Street then was longer than it is now as indicated by the thick black line. Tyne Street was also longer. The aqua and purple lines represent the Main North Line and sidings respectively. There was a pedestrian footway with its own crossing bells over the tracks at this point. Car parking for the workshops was located at the end of Lester Lane on the far side of the tracks and directly in front of the social hall. There were four tracks going across the pedestrian crossing, as shown on this S&I diagram of the area:
As shown upper left corner these tracks were the two saleyard siding tracks, the Main North Line and the Fletchers siding, which, I believe, also connected to the Publicity & Advertising Branch siding nearby. Whenever we met in the hall the meetings were usually disturbed to some extent by trains going past on the MNL just outside the front door.
Within just a few years the workshops had closed and Ferrymead was compelled to find another location in which to meet. The buildings were torn down and a new connecting curve track (red line on the maps above) was laid requiring the two streets to be cut short. The building outlined in the right hand map where the current line goes through was the works manager’s office next to the main entrance off Lowe St. The rest of the buildings were gradually dismantled. One of the last was the old joinery shops at the north-east corner, used as I believe a store until it burned down.
The last building left on the site of any sort was the wheel lathe shed (yellow in the maps) which stayed until the 2000s when Turners Auctions site was developed.